I manage a restaurant, and we consistently have to deal with relatives or friends calling and asking when someone works or if they are off work yet. I’ve tried to strictly enforce our confidentiality-privacy policy, which states that employee information is confidential (to non-employees), including contact information and schedules. Furthermore, we don’t allow employees to take personal calls on our business phone except in cases of emergency, so my standard response is, ‘I’m sorry, we’re not allowed to disclose that over the phone’ or simply to say that person is ‘not available.’ But I have had people become irate when I will not tell them if someone is at work, clocked in, etc. Is it legal for me to comply with their requests?

Rita Risser replies:

Since you have a confidentiality-privacy policy, you need to comply with it. You are doing the right thing. You may want to inform your employees about this situation and tell them to tell their friends and family not to call. Good luck!

Posted 01-12-2016

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