Network Communications: Electronic Mail (email)
Non-business uses of an MWCD email account that unjustifiably interferes with business activities is not permitted. Personal use of the email that disrupts district business, incurs an undue cost to the district, could potentially embarrass the district or has the appearance of impropriety is strictly prohibited. Incidental personal use of the electronic mail system is permitted but should be brief and held to a minimum during working hours. Examples of unjustifiable interference with business activities include but are not limited to providing MWCD email address as primary contact for:
- Family and Friends
- Personally affiliated groups (i.e. little league baseball, girl scouts, religious organizations.)
- E-commerce (Non-business)
Email communications are not confidential. The MWCD reserves the right to monitor email services at anytime without prior notice to ensure compliance with internal policies, supports the performance of internal investigations, and assist with the management of information systems. Use of the email systems constitutes the acceptance of such monitoring.
Employees are strictly prohibited from using the MWCD email account for any personal business interests or profit making activities.
Email communications shall not contain offensive, obscene, threatening, harassing or incendiary statements. Statements that disparage others based on their race, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, religious, or political beliefs as well as statements that promote violence or the use of weapons or devices associated with terrorist activities are strictly forbidden.
Concealing or misrepresenting one’s name or affiliation to mask unauthorized, fraudulent, irresponsible or offensive behavior in electronic communications is prohibited.
Sending unsolicited e-mails or facsimiles in bulk or forwarding electronic chain letters in bulk is prohibited.
Accessing personal Internet Service Providers for any purposes using the district’s network Internet connection is prohibited. Users are not permitted to access personal e-mail accounts (e.g., Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo, AOL) using an MWCD computer unless an exempt employee is traveling overnight on official business.
Access to MWCD web-based email is provided to exempt employees for use while off-duty. Non-exempt employees are prohibited from accessing MWCD web-based email while off-duty.
Employees are prohibited from entering into any contract or agreement of the MWCD though electronic mail without prior authorization. Any such contract or agreement must be executed through normal channels.
In general, users should exercise the same restraint and caution in drafting and transmitting messages over the electronic mail as they would when writing a memorandum and should assume that their message will be saved and reviewed by someone other than the intended recipients. Emails are official District records and are subject to public record requests.
Communications from MWCD legal counsel deserve special consideration. Employees should be aware that sharing a privileged communication received from legal counsel with the wrong person could result in loss of the attorney-client privilege — a serious matter. Because it is extremely easy to forward an E- mail, employees must be particularly conscious of this issue. Employees may not forward an E-mail communication from legal counsel to anyone not employed by MWCD, without the prior approval of legal counsel. Such E-mails should only be shared with employees who have a business reason to have access to the information. Matters that clearly do not involve any confidential communications (such as those related to scheduling) may be forwarded to non-employees.
Anyone who becomes aware of a violation of this policy shall report it to his/her supervisor or the violator’s supervisor immediately. Any violation of this policy may result in the immediate disconnection of an employee-user. Depending upon the severity of the infraction, management of the MWCD will determine whether further action against the individual is necessary. Serious violations may result in termination of employment and/or criminal prosecution.