Are SEC checks of staff illegal? (perhaps!)

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Are SEC checks of staff illegal? (perhaps!)

Post by pippi » Fri Jun 27, 2003 9:36 am

Doesn't the CO$ use SEC checks routinely of its staff and Sea Orgiers? And, wouldn't a 'rock slam' during a SEC check put your 'job' in eternal jeapoardy?

"The Department of Labor administers and enforces the Employee Polygraph Protection Act of 1988 (the Act) through the Wage and Hour Division of the Employment Standards Administration. The Act generally prevents employers engaged in interstate commerce from using lie detector tests either for pre-employment screening or during the course of employment" (Polygraph Protection Act of 1988)

Definitions

* a lie detector includes a polygraph, deceptograph, voice stress analyzer, psychological stress evaluator or similar device (whether mechanical or electrical) used to render a diagnostic opinion as to the honesty or dishonesty of an individual.

Prohibitions

An employer shall not:

* Require, request, suggest or cause an employee or prospective employee to take or submit to any lie detector test.
* Use, accept, refer to, or inquire about the results of any lie detector test of an employee or prospective employee.
* Discharge, discipline, discriminate against, deny employment or promotion, or threaten to take any such action against an employee or prospective employee for refusal to take a test, on the basis of the results of a test, for filing a complaint, for testifying in any proceeding or for exercising any rights afforded by the Act.


Are there any misundersood words here ???

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Post by mikedewolf » Fri Jun 27, 2003 4:41 pm

The church will argue that its security checks are "spiritual counseling that addresses a persons overt acts" and not a "test."

There's an example of Scientology double-think for you! It claims that Scientology sec checking tech has no relation whatsoever to polygraph exams given by the FBI, even though the processes are quite similar, given under similar circumstances and both are refered to by the name "security check."

Mike
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Post by lucretiamacevil » Fri Jun 27, 2003 8:41 pm

They will also argue that the emeter is not a polygraph device. And they will be right.

HOWEVER, I believe that anyone wanting to sue the Church over something?

This item would be a great one to pursue!

Hell, I could even testify as a witness that it IS a spiritual tool in ethics counseling --

unless it is being used OTHERWISE.

Lucy

What was it Ron said? Better get your ethics in, or else ...?

Or was there more to that statement?

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Post by mikedewolf » Fri Jun 27, 2003 9:26 pm

QUOTE:
They will also argue that the emeter is not a polygraph device. And they will be right.
END QUOTE

Not necessarily. The law says "or similar device," so a court could rule that an e-mater is a "similar device."
Mike de Wolf
"A science that depends on Authority alone is a breath in the wind of truth and is therefore no science at all." - L. Ron Hubbard

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Post by umike » Fri Jun 27, 2003 9:57 pm

I think Mike is correct. Additionally..scientology adherants sign all kinds of things before taking courses/auditing.
At least I did..way back when.
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http://www.forum.exscn.net/index.php

Tom
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Post by Tom » Fri Jun 27, 2003 10:47 pm

FACT: The E-meter CAN be used as a polygraph-like device in their Sec Check BS.

My last encounter was with a bunch of Sea Org staffers visiting the Founding Church in D.C and pulling a bunch of public in to see why they were "stahled" on the Bridge. That was in October of 1987. In retrospect, it should have been called "sect" checking!!! :)

The movie "Meet the Parents" with Ben Stiller and Robert DeNiro had an hilarious scene of WOG sec checking. It's a riot!

tp

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Post by Ball of Fluff » Fri Jun 27, 2003 11:15 pm

Dunno 'bout Sea Org- but from what I remember being on staff and from what others have told me, sec checks are not routine - as such-on staff.

I'll tell you of an instance where they are most definitely done that I know of, though, and you can take it from there.

When someone is leaving staff- even when they've completed their staff contract- they go on a routing form. CofS has routing forms for everything. Including that. So they go on this routing form, various things are done, and one of them is a sec check.

The church often purposely holds off putting the person on their routing form even if they've completed their contract, often claiming that they don't have anyone to do the sec check, so that they can try and keep the person there working because they don't want to lose staff.

They lose a lot of staff because after a while people find out it's more like slavery so they want to leave.

Now as to the legality, I would say that if it came up the church would say it's a confessional, part of our religion, yadda yadda, and maybe, too, "Well, he signed the contract and that allows us to ..."

Whether or not that would really hold water if challenged would be something I personally would ask a contract attorney. And one of the things that attorney would almost certainly consider would be what's *ON* the type of sec check used for staff. (there are several different types).

Also, remember, this is the church of the holy lawsuit. They do illegal stuff all the time and they make life hell for anyone who challenges them.And then, lo and behold,a lot of people don't want to take them on in court.

Just look at the recruitment practices of both minors and of people between, say, 18-25. No one can tell me everything they do *there* is legal.

Coercion. Blackmail, etc.

But I don't see anybody taking them on in some big-ass lawsuit although it would be very interesting if anyone did and would be one lawsuit I, for one, would love to see the church lose.

It occurs to me that there might be other occasions where staff are sec checked but it still probably wouldn't be routine. It would be if the staff member did something to raise red flags in the mind of some exec, probably.

Still, that doesn't change the fact that the legality of this is something to be examined.

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Post by Ball of Fluff » Fri Jun 27, 2003 11:18 pm

Oh! I meant to add something.

I personally consider the employment practices including this not letting people off their expired contract or letting them out of one that's not expired- til they do this, that, and the other thing- unethical, immoral and probably on very shaky ground, illegally.

I think the fact that person has to go through a routing form w/ sec check and get bugged to death if it doesn't come out a certain way to be harassment and coercion of a type.

Like the recruitment practices, that strikes me as illegal.

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Post by lucretiamacevil » Sat Jun 28, 2003 1:26 am

Tom,

Change USED to ABUSED and I am with you all the way.

It is a “similar device,” but as a polygraph substitute it sux. And the polygraph is much more suited to “lie detection” than an emeter. And even so, its results are often inconclusive. For the same reasons, sometimes, that sec checks accomplish nothing except making people who were ok very aggravated.

The meter? It is not sensitive enough in and of itself to track more than 2 contact points. Which I have yet to see linked to a polygraph.

It is good for what it is good for. And not for what it is not food for.

The frequency I hear reported of sec checks, IMO, would all by itself stir up the very trouble it is supposed to resolve. As anyone can see here.

And while I feel strongly that ethics tech is very useful, having spent 20 years in the newspaper industry, I have been seeing such different RESULTS on upper levels since shortly before Hubbard's death that anyone would have to be a masochist to seek the kind of excellent COUNSELING in ethics I received during my years as an active member.

I spent 7 years in a toxic environment where a DAILY sec check on a polygraph would have been a welcome relief from assholes trying to figure out why I was having breakfast after a 12 hour shift but were too dim to just ask. Especially the question they really wanted to ask:

“How is it she and that ‘antago’ hotshot get along so well?” Hey no mystery there: he’s got balls. He’ll talk with me. You lurk. And speculate. Flunk, Sherlock. I am eating breakfast because I have put in a 12-hr day to pay your salary. Creating the product that brings in the money that pay for your salary, your benefits packages, your perqs, upkeep on your mistress or office wife AND the lawsuits, too, mustn't forget those.

Daily polygraph would have been a welcome relief. From that.

But I would not recommend it for an entire body of employees daily. And I would have been booted for protesting anything like that as an auditor on any level.

Me, I am still trying to figure out how I passed my one and only real sec check. Guess my sec checker was too nervous to read the meter after I had to ask for it and someone else told his senior so I wouldn’t be lurking at the sign that read “Meter checked only beyond this point” for the rest of the day?

During out off-meter A to J, he thought I was bad news on account of working for a major daily. But we had not even hit the really good stuff because he rabbited for cover under something he thought I couldn’t just produce – need recommendation from someone who’s in GO for at least 2 years … and guess what just walked up, my recommendation. A very strong recommendation.

The whole process is only as good as the skills AND THE INTENTIONS of the folks who use it.

And if I had to go through that daily with the guy who gave me my original, well, I would soon be rock-slamming at the sight of an emeter.

Why? Well where I worked, supervisors were known to get grey hair for coming between workers and the work and making the error of making eye contact after that folly. Those who were ever foolish enough to try that sort of thing regularly would fit right in with the current gang I have been learning about here.

Lucy

Tom
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Post by Tom » Sat Jun 28, 2003 6:06 am

OK Lucy, "ABUSED" works for me too! :)

Thanks,

tp

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Post by lucretiamacevil » Sat Jun 28, 2003 11:18 am

Thanks, Tom.

There is so much mystification and glorification of this instrument that is only a TOOL.Like any other tool -- and I do many any other tool.

I knew a guy in the Army once I would bet a year's pay could kill just about anyone a bobby-pin, but usually a bobby pin holds your hair out of your eyes.

Try and tell a hairdresser a bobby-pin is a lethal weapon, well, there is a little problem in communication there.

The single most consistent gaping difference in Scientologists during all the years I was active was the difference between the major divisions I called the Techies and the Trekkies. Every "failed" staff member I ever met -- by which I mean they left when their contract was up -- joined staff with the goal of becoming a techie and wound up with the trekkies. And left maybe fully admin hatted. Literally every competent staff member I knew whose post did not take him or her away from contact with public was a techie. The techies who left staff for any reason applied study tech and really dug into the ethics tech, and hey -- give a Scientologist in those days a roof overhead and a phone and if there was an iota of entrepreneurship, there would be a whole new comany with people earning money, even, almost before you could blink.

So what changed?

The tech? Or the people?

This is really not an either/or. Merely extremes, and in between those two how many people fighting for exactly the same thing at each other's throats constantly?

Well, I suppose you could say the why is God. But most folks on this board are atheists or agnostics or adherents to relatively godless practices. So what's their excuse?

I personally love ethics tech. Because I have worked with really big people in really big organizations of all sorts, and that thing called the motivator? That you're pullin' in whenever you get the sniffles? HAH! No wonder some folks have trouble with the concept.

"Pull in" is not exactly what you do. Don't take my word for it. Just do something big enough that doesn't align perfectly up the dynamics. And you'll soon understand what a real motivator is.

Then call me, if I have lived out the hour playing the games I love to play, I would like to chat about a different concept than "pull," when it comes to motivators.

I had horrified OSA telling them it would be nice to get bright for once about Fair Game and not pit the entire organization against someone I clearly recognized as OT. What level unknown. Naturally almost before daybreak there was counterpropagada. saying only path is AO.

Bull puckey. When years later I finally got the guy's clip file together going blind reading microfiche, well, his entire career could be easily seen as a rather prolonged but nonetheless rather spectacular exercise processing OT 3. If you weren't blind, anyway.

OT 4 was next, 5 grueling years. I was myself a little sore after testing the limits of POWER on OT 1. At least the only OT 1 I will do this lifetime.

And after this exercise, I just have to wonder why anyone would ever do the upper levels at all. If they had attested to Natural Clear, anyhow. With so many other ways to achieve the same result just living your life.

AND I will say right up front, years 5 and 6 of that time in my life?

Without my understanding of everything that was going on around me, I would have been crushed like a piece of aluminum foil between the forces of them motivators! Not to mention some I set in motion myself fully aware that the next one would be a doozy.

This idea is one well worth researching. Thanks for starting, it, pippi.

And I wish I would be able to help more than I think I will be able to, because from what I have been able to observe, if someone wants to destroy the organization, there are only three ways to go about that. And properly loaded, well, this could be one of those missiles that sails into your living room and just stops, to say howdy sucker, before it goes boom.

Keep me posted. I will let you know if I stumble across anything doing my own thing. One thing that might help both adventures is lots of 2WC on sec checks i remember fondly. or not fondly. The weird processes I have developed work better with more data rather than less. I know there is stuff here, but except for one post Tory made I have no reality on content. I just know I'd never pass one of those.

Thanks all. And glad we are in agreement on a thread at last, Tom.

Lucy

Tom
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Post by Tom » Sat Jun 28, 2003 3:34 pm

Actually Lucy, I'm quite an agreable chap. Also, I don't use (abuse) bobby pins either! :)

tp

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Post by pippi » Mon Jun 30, 2003 12:49 pm

I think the Department of Labor's language is pretty clear on the matter: "[it is illegal for an employer to use any device] to render a diagnostic opinion as to the honesty or dishonesty of an individual"

There are specific exceptions to the rule, but none of them come close to the inclusion of "religious" practice.

I'd like to see an ex-Scientologist who was harrassed by SEC checks in the course of their staff work file a complaint with the Department of Labor. It may only lead to a perfunctory investigation, but it will be entered into a record and can form the basis for a larger investigation if a pattern of complaints emerges.

Remember! We are talking about a "religion" that does regular routine "lie detector" SECURITY CHECKS on its members (both public and staff)!!!

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Post by Ball of Fluff » Mon Jun 30, 2003 5:38 pm

Ok. Well, like I said, the church does things that are far more illegal and nothing ever happens.

And most staff are not "harassed" by sec checks.

One can go years without getting any.

But one does get the promise of one at the end of one's contract which is something I think is bogus.

But I say "promise" because the church often witholds them, claiming there's no one available to do it, and that way they can keep the guy on the hook.

So I think the bigger illegality is the whole contract/freeloader debt/recruiting practice issue.

Any one of those elements constitute some very very illegal and immoral crap.

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Post by bird » Mon Sep 25, 2006 3:22 pm

Interesting old thread about the legality of the use of the E-Meter during Security Checks.

The Polygraph Protection Act 1988
"generally prevents employers engaged in interstate commerce from using lie detector tests either for pre-employment screening or during the course of employment""
It's irrelevant to say that CoS will deny that the E-Meter isn't a Polygraph, as LRH Himself wrote that the E-Meter actually IS a Lie Detector.
HUBBARD COMMUNICATION OFFICE
Saint Hill Manor, East Grinstead, Sussex

HCO OF 3 FEBRUARY 1960
Sthill

SECURITY CHECK

In keeping with policy carried out by all Central Organizations, an E-Meter check will be made on all new and existing staff at Saint Hill.

An E-Meter is better known as a "lie detector" and is used to ascertain truth of background and conduct.

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