Capella University Employment Law for Human Resource Practice Article Summary


From an HR perspective, the topic of privacy in the workplace is  often related to pre-employment background checks and the use of  technology. During the pre-employment period, privacy can become a  concern because employers investigate criminal records, check credit  reports, contact former employers, et cetera. Once employed, an  individual’s use of company technology—and what is permissible and what  is private—can also be concerns.

These topics are very important for HR practitioners and all members  of management to understand, because privacy violations can be very  costly to an organization and can result in negative press as well.

The right to privacy is an honored value in the United States and  has always been a complicated area of the law. After the terrorist  attacks of September 11, 2001, questions have centered on privacy in  numerous circles, not the least of which is the workplace. During this  course, you have explored the balance between privacy, safety, and  fairness. In this assessment, you will review the emerging issues  specifically related to privacy and consider their legal implications.

Most discussion on this topic revolves around technology and  pre-employment inquiry, but health records are emerging as equally  important. Personnel records and criminal records—even academic  records—are becoming relevant when decisions about the pursuit and  retention of employment are on the table. Try not to restrict your  thinking to personal ethical issues. Rather, try to see how the law is  shaping policy in the workplace and then look at the diversity of  personal lifestyles.

Use the Capella library and the Internet to find an article related  to the issue of privacy in the workplace. Look for a case that is  specifically related to human resources. Try to find the most recent  instance of such a case.

Then, write a 2–3 page article review in which you discuss the following:

  • Identify the legal impact of the information in your chosen article related to privacy in the workplace.
  • Describe how companies can act in accordance with the privacy laws addressed in your article.
  • Describe how companies can recover from violations related to the privacy laws addressed in your article.
  • Provide a rationale to support your point of view.
  • Shen, F. X. (2013). Neuroscience, mental privacy, and the law. Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy, 36(2), 653–713.
  • Bagenstos, S. R. (2013). Employment law and social equality. Michigan Law Review, 112(2), 225–273.Walsh, D. J. (2019). Employment law for human resource practice (6th ed.). Cengage. Available in the courseroom via the VitalSource Bookshelf link. 
  • Chapter 15, “Privacy on the Job.”

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