A US company recently fired a Dutch employee for not keeping his webcam during work hours. Chetu, a Florida-based company, hired a telemarketer in the Netherlands, and as per its organization’s rules, it demanded that the employee turns on his webcam during work hours. The employee refused to do so as he was uncomfortable with being monitored nine hours per day in a program that included screen-sharing and streaming his webcam. As a result, he was fired by the company on the grounds of ‘insubordination’ and ‘refusal to work,’ according to public court documents.
The employee took Chetu to court for unfair dismissal, and the Dutch court ruled that ‘instructions to keep the webcam turned on conflicts with the respect for the privacy of the workers.’ In its verdict, the court added that demanding webcam surveillance is a human rights violation.
In addition, the court has ordered Chetu to pay for the employee’s court costs, a fine of $50,000, back wages, and an order to remove the employee’s non-compete clause. The company must also pay the employee’s wages, unused vacation days, and other costs as per the ruling.