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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 61704
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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A brief description: I wore a body worn camera to my job,

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A brief description: I wore a body worn camera to my job, and I accidentally activated the camera during a private conversation with another colleague on my break, in the break room.Another colleague has accessed the camera footage through his own personal laptop and downloaded it onto a personalUSB stick. He has then forwarded it to my boss. My boss has sacked me because the conversation in question was of a sexual nature even though there was no complaint made by the other colleague, the colleague in question was also in the room when the other colleague downloaded the footage illegally. I have reported this to the police.I have spoken to ACAS and the ICO who have advised me that this is in fact wrongful acquisition of the footage, and they had no reason to investigate the footage as no complaint was made and it is in fact a breach of privacy as it was recorded on my break in the break area, and it was accidental footage. They’re also refusing to give me a copy of the footage. My employer are only giving me until Friday to appeal the decision and come up with any solicitors letter etc.

Hello, I’m Ben, a UK lawyer and will be dealing with your case today. I may also need to ask some questions to determine the legal position.

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
No problem. Thank you

Why did you have the camera on you at the time?

Also, how long had you worked there for?

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
They are body worn cameras, we wear them to respond to incidents we deal with whilst patrolling public areas. They have small switches that can be flicked up and down to activate them when responding to an incident.
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
I’ve worked there since February this year, so I’m aware I don’t have a right for unfair dismissal. But what I’m more concerned about here is the breach of privacy/GDPR laws by the way the footage has been accessed

Thank you. I will get back to you with my answer as soon as I can, which will be at some point today. The system will notify you when this happens. Please do not reply in the meantime as this may unnecessarily delay my response. Many thanks.

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Thank you very much

Can I check are you personally visible on the camera?

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
No, it’s strapped around my chest so is facing outwards
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
It is Audio recorded too

Ok I am doubtful that this is a GDPR issue if there was no personal information recorded about you and it was just you talking on camera. The GDPR only protects personal data and if no personal data was recorded, then it is not a data protection issue.

 

As to the dismissal, if you have been continuously employed at you place of work for less than 2 years then your employment rights will unfortunately be somewhat limited. Most importantly, you will not be protected against unfair dismissal. This means that your employer can dismiss you for more or less any reason, and without following a fair procedure, as long as the decision is not based on a reason which makes a dismissal automatically unfair. These include:

· Discrimination due to a protected characteristic (i.e. because of gender, race, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, etc.)

· Taking, or trying to take, leave for family reasons including pregnancy, maternity/paternity leave, parental leave, adoption leave or leave for dependants

 

However, if the dismissal had nothing to do with any of the above exceptions, you would not be able to challenge it. In that case your only protection would be if you were dismissed in breach of contract. That would usually happen if you were not paid any contractual notice period due to you (unless you were dismissed for gross misconduct, where no notice would be due). If you did not have a written contract in place you would be entitled to the minimum statutory notice period of 1 week. The employer would either have to allow you to work that notice period and pay you as normal, or they instead have to pay you in lieu of notice, where you are paid for the equivalent of the notice pay but your employment is terminated immediately.

 

Does this answer your query?

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Yes, it does. Thank you very much for your time

All the best

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