Annelie on asthma, humor, and the world.

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Confidentiality vs. Freedom of speach

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Many firms have a confidentiality clause hindering their employee to speak their mind. Some enforce such a strong confidentiality clause that they forbid their staff to tell anything outside the firm that “can make the firm look bad to others” “to others than employees”, that in reality hinder the employed staff to negatively express themselves about their employer even with their family. In fact this means that if you are disappointed about the firm, and if you get to know something that is on the bad side with the firm, you are not allowed to tell anyone. If you do you risk loosing your job or getting accused in court, or both.

An employee that have noticed something about a business and have tried to take it up internal, and that do not help, is then forbidden to tell anyone outside the firm about the bad conditions. In reality this means they are hindering employees from whistle blowing, or telling the authorities what is going on in this business.  To narrow it further they are not allowed to speak at all other than praise for the firm. Does not matter if it is really so nice or bad as hell.

Such Confidentiality clauses is as I see it a hindering of Freedom of speech.

Freedom of speech is a human right.

Freedom of speech is the political right to communicate one’s opinions and ideas via speech. The term freedom of expression is sometimes used synonymously, but includes any act of seeking, receiving and imparting information or ideas, regardless of the medium used. The right to freedom of expression is recognized as a human right under Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and recognized in international human rights law in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). Article 19 of the ICCPR states that “[e]veryone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference” and “everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through any other media of his choice”.”

If a firm got all sorted and everything by the book, treating the staff nicely they would not have to have such clauses, because then there would not be anything to complaint or talk badly about.

Firms who do this I think should look inside themselves before gag their staff. It is a problem when a business acts like a dictator first treating them badly, and then silence and gag them, and threaten them with loosing their job to make them silence. That is ladies and gentlemen abuse, and psychological abuse on one of its worst. Degrading treatment and punishment.

Employes tend to use much time, pride and effort in their work, and they are also in a situation that they are subordinate and therefore in a dependence of work and salary to live, and a firm that mistreat their staff are doing abuse. When they on top of it silence and gag the employees they increase the abuse to a maximum.

As I see it they are breaking the law about Freedom of speech and Freedom of expression.

And see UN talking about Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Article 5.

  • No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

Article 12.

  • No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family,  home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.

Article 18.

  • Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.

Article 19.

  • Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

And even other laws depending on what the matter is all about.

I have a special firm in mind, but this may not be limited to them. Surely many others do the same.

Source: The Human rights law: United Nations (UN)


Author: Annelie

I like canoeing, photographing, friends, movies, food, humor, and going on trips. I dislike rudeness, dishonesty, violence, nastyness, and people not caring for others. I do not drink much, I do not smoke and I do not do drugs. I love friends who are kind to me and stick with me. If you want to give me a gift, the best gift is to stop smoking and stop using fragranced products. Then you give me health and that dear friend, is the best gift a person can get. It is a gift of love. I got asthma and I am hearing disabled.

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