Lawmaker wants to change law against parents eavesdropping - WNEM TV 5

Lawmaker wants to change law against parents eavesdropping

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LANSING, MI (WNEM) -

Did you know under Michigan law eavesdropping on your child’s phone conversations could land you in jail?

It’s a concept that one Michigan lawmaker wants to change.

According to the Detroit Free Press, snooping while your children talk on a landline is punishable by up to two years in prison and a $2,000 fine under the current law. 

However, State Rep. Peter Lucido, R-Shelby Township, hopes to give parents an exemption.

“Parents have the right to prevent possible harm to their own children,” Lucido said.

In Michigan, it is legal for someone to record a phone conversation without the consent of the person on the other end. However, it’s illegal for a third party to listen to or record the conversation.

Lucido claimed the law prevents parents from protecting their children. He introduced a bill last week to change the law. 

"I hope they do it immediately, immediately. The fact that that is even a thought or even in the books. How did they even pass that to begin with," said Jessica Baker-Appolonia, parent.

Baker is a mother of three who was shocked to hear about the law.

The legislation was originally introduced in the '60s to prevent wiretapping.

James General, a father of five, said he thinks safety overrules privacy.

"I think parents should be allowed to listen in on the kid's conversations because there's so much going on in the world," General said.

Some people think eavesdropping breaks trust between parents and their kids.

"Your phone is your diary. It's your personal notes like even your conversation with your friends. It's personal. You don't want your parents to know everything that you're doing," said Waunesha Sanders, aunt.

Baker said regardless of the law, it's not going to prevent her from good parenting.

"OK, what happened to you're not an adult until you're 18-years-old? When you're paying your own phone bill then you can try to tell me, but as long as you're under my roof, you're not going to pull that crap. No, absolutely not," Baker said.

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