By: Terry Burgess, Career and Personal Leadership Coach, Upward MC
I was reading my daily news feed and found the story about the Wisconsin technology company, Three Square Market, who is wanting to offer microchips to their employees. The company says they have 50 employees who are wanting to be microchipped to make their life easier. This brought up a very difficult ethical and moral dilemma in my mind.
These small micro transmitters using radio-frequency identification are the size of a grain of rice and could be put into their hand in a few second. Once installed the employee could use these chips to scan into the building, their computer, and even buy items in the break room. I wonder how many of these employees have thought about the long-term effects of being micro-chipped.
My first thought was this could be helpful for the individual loses or forgets their identification badge. However, my mind quickly ran to other negative results. Here are my 4 reasons I would have against being microchipped by my employer.
- What are the odds that I am going to be with this company until I retire?
- In today’s world, the average worker remains at one company less than 5 years. Once you leave that company that microchip is no longer viable.
- What are the long term and short term affects that the chip and its radio waves have on your health?
- Microchips have been used in pets for several years. However, there is limited research to show if there are negative effects on pet’s health. Are you willing to try a microchip that might cause diseases or conditions such as cancer, neurological, tissue damage, or other health conditions just for the convivence of not carrying cash or a photo id on the job.
- What else can the employer do with the chip without the employee’s knowledge?
- Three Square Market states there is no GPS signals assigned to the microchip. However, in time there could be as research advances. Now let’s go a couple of years in the future, do you really want your employer to know where you are at all times even when you’re not on the clock. I know that I value my privacy and getting a microchip can and more than likely will lead to a loss of one’s privacy in the future.
- What if I refuse to be microchipped, can the company release me?
- Let’s be honest here. Three Square Market says employees do not have to be microchipped. However, if a company wishes to push microchips on their employees and the employee wishes not to be micro-chipped they could be forced out by management being more focused on the “rogue” team player.
If it were me and my employer said we are going to this new microchip technology and all employees have to be micro-chipped, I would and refuse to be compliant based upon my right of privacy while submitting two weeks notice at the same time. I realize this may be extreme and over reaction thinking for some individuals but it goes against my moral principles. I remember a statement my mother told me once, “Son, not all technological advances are for the good of all and if we got by before without the technology we can in the future.”
Terry is a Career and Personal Leadership Coach with Upward MC in Benton, Kentucky. He can be contacted via e-mail at Terry@upwardmc.com or by phone at 270-493-0967. His website can be found at http://www.upwardmc.com