EIT: Supermarketin työntekijöiden salainen videovalvonta ei loukannut heidän yksityisyyttään

17.10.2019 | Oikeusuutiset

Markku Fredman

Spanish supermarket cashiers covertly filmed by security cameras did not suffer a violation of their privacy rights

In today’s Grand Chamber judgment in the case of López Ribalda and Others v. Spain (applications nos. 1874/13 and 8567/13) the European Court of Human Rights held, by 14 votes to three, that there had been:

  • no violation of Article 8 (right to respect for private and family life) of the European Convention on Human Rights, and,
  • unanimously that there had been no violation of Article 6 § 1 (right to a fair trial).

The case concerned the covert video-surveillance of employees which led to their dismissal. The Court found in particular that the Spanish courts had carefully balanced the rights of the applicants – supermarket employees suspected of theft – and those of the employer, and had carried out a thorough examination of the justification for the video-surveillance. A key argument made by the applicants was that they had not been given prior notification of the surveillance, despite such a legal requirement, but the Court found that there had been a clear justification for such a measure owing to a reasonable suspicion of serious misconduct and to the losses involved, taking account of the extent and the consequences of the measure. The domestic courts had not exceeded their power of discretion (“margin of appreciation”) in finding the monitoring proportionate and legitimate.