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Copyright (c) 2011 Hofstra Labor & Employment Law Journal
Hofstra Labor & Employment Law Journal

NOTE: SPEAK THE TRUTH AND TELL NO LIES: AN UPDATE FOR THE EMPLOYEE POLYGRAPH PROTECTION ACT

Fall, 2011

Hofstra Labor & Employment Law Journal

29 Hofstra Lab. & Emp. L.J. 141

Author

David Barnhorn and Joey E. Pegram*

Excerpt




I. Introduction
 
As a society and as human beings, we are inherently fascinated with uncovering the unknown, especially when it involves what those around us are thinking - how they feel about us, what they are planning next, and most importantly, whether or not they are lying. 2 This idea manifests itself from the esoteric, with a vast number of superheroes 3 and book characters possessing telepathic powers, to the concrete, with man's attempt to make this nagging desire a reality in the form of a lie-detector machine. As one journalist puts it "there is something disconcerting about the fact that we can map the human genome and land a robot on Mars, but we still can't say for sure whether someone is trying to pull the wool over our eyes." 4

In 1988, Congress passed the Employee Polygraph Protection Act ("EPPA") to restrict the startlingly high use of lie detection devices in the workplace. 5 While this law did much to combat the use of these inaccurate devices, the codified exemptions in the law left many individuals, namely public sector employees, unprotected. In addition to these gaps in the legislation, new and increasingly intrusive technology is being marketed as a lie detection device. These shortcomings and technological advancements urgently require a change in the EPPA's statutory framework. The purpose of this Note is to outline the changes necessary to cure the current weaknesses in the EPPA and bring it up to date. Section II describes the ...
 
 
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