Legal briefs

Employer can’t use finger scan system to clock employees

Employer can’t use finger scan system to clock employees

An Ontario court has upheld an arbitrator’s decision that an employer can’t use a finger scan system to check employees in and out of the workplace.

IKO Industries Ltd. appealed the arbitrator’s ruling, alleging the arbitrator did not have jurisdiction to hear the grievance and that the decision was patently unreasonable.

But the Ontario Superior Court of Justice pointed out the employer had conceded that the employee’s right to privacy was recognized in the arbitral jurisprudence. The court also said the arbitrator’s decision was thorough and well reasoned.

“The employer essentially argued that the arbitrator ought to have balanced the employer’s and employees’ interests differently,” said the court. “(The arbitrator) ultimately concluded that while the invasion of privacy was not substantial, the employer’s interest in implementing the system did not outweigh the invasion of privacy given all of the circumstances of the workplace and alternative means available to the employer.”

For more information see:

IKO Industries Ltd. v. U.S.W.A., Local 8580, 2006 CarswellOnt 7541 (Ont. S.C.J.).

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