Can the company track my bathroom visits?

Our office telephone system also has an inter office instant messaging system. This system allows you to show a status, such as “busy”, “away”, “lunch”, etc. We have been told by our HR person that if we step away from our desk we must put a status up, and we are not allowed to simply use “away”, but must say why we are away from our desk, such as “in the restroom”.

I can understand the need for others to be made aware when we will be away from our desk for more than a few minutes, but is this legal to require us to make our entire office aware of when we are using the RESTROOM?

Posted  09-23-2011

Ann Kiernan replies:

I agree that is way too much information! How about “away-on break”?


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About the Author:

Ann Kiernan has litigated claims of wrongful discharge and discrimination before state and federal courts and administrative matters before the New Jersey Division on Civil Rights, the National Labor Relations Board and the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission, representing both employers and employees. Ms. Kiernan co-hosted The Employee Rights Forum, a weekly radio call-in show reaching up to a half-million listeners in the New York metropolitan area, and her articles on employment law have been published in many books and magazines. Both as a firm partner and as a director, Ms. Kiernan gained solid experience in management and human resources compliance. She has worked with Fair Measures since 1997.