A Norwegian insurance company call center has implemented a new system for its workers that will time their bathroom breaks. A high-tech surveillance system will alert a manager if an employee spends more than eight minutes in the bathroom. The purpose of the new system is to monitor employees that spend too much time away from their desks to go to the bathroom, smoke a cigarette or socialize. The firm claims they are not trying to control employee bathroom breaks, but rather make sure customers’ inquiries are answered in a timely manner. Full article.

Under New York law, if a work shift is more than six hours, starting before 11 a.m. and continuing until 2 p.m., an employee must be given an uninterrupted lunch period of at least half an hour between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Meal periods do not count as work time, thus employers need not pay for that time. Employers do not have to provide other “breaks”, such as for “rest periods” or “coffee breaks.” But, if an employer permits a break of up to 20 minutes, then they should pay it as work time.

Leeds Morelli & Brown, PC, an employment discrimination law firm, represents employees in the New York City and Long Island area. Our employment discrimination lawyers believe there is no place for discrimination in our workplace. If you are a victim of employment discrimination, please contact Leeds, Morelli and Brown, PC at 1-800-585-4658 or 516-873-9550 for a free consultation.