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All employees could get access to their personnel records

State statute only requires private employers with 20 or more employees to allow workers access to their personnel records.

Rep. Michael Nelson (DFL-Brooklyn Park) wants that expanded to everyone.

He sponsors HF3522 that would require an employee of a private sector employer with one or more employees be allowed access to their personnel records.

“This is only to bring whatever rights that have been part of the law for 35 years to more (people),” open government and privacy lobbyist Rich Neumeister, told the House Labor and Industry Finance and Policy Committee Tuesday. The bill was laid over for further consideration.

Employees would be able to access data from personnel records, correct or amend data of identifiable information, and keep a copy of their personnel record.

“It’s extending rights to other employees that currently don’t have that,” Nelson said. “To be able to view their … personnel records, and if there’s errors, that they can make corrections and that they can see what’s in there to know what’s being said about them.”

Neumeister said Minnesota state and public employees already have these rights.

“We’ve seen a few different bills that have kind of excluded government entities, and I’m glad to hear that there’s other sections of state statutes that guide us so that there are those same protections or opportunities for state employees,” said Rep. Isaac Schultz (R-Elmdale Township). “We’re not trying to set government up and above that which we’re expecting from the private sector.”

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