Can a Facebook post cause a wrongful termination?

Millions of people use the Internet to communicate with their friends and family each day. One of the most popular social networking sites for people in California and across the country is Facebook. Even though the First Amendment grants people freedom of speech, it does not prevent employers from checking in on what their workers are writing. A police officer from another state claims that a post that he wrote led to his wrongful termination.

The former officer claims he was off duty when he wrote the Facebook post. The post was related a murder case that was being handled the department. The city claims that the post violated its social media policy. The plaintiff's lawyer contends that his client has the right to freedom of speech, and the city does not have the right to censure or terminate him based on what he writes.

The man believes that he is being intentionally targeted because of his participation in another lawsuit against the city from 2012. In that suit, the plaintiff, as well as eight other officers, filed a race discrimination claim. They claimed that less-qualified black applicants were given promotions instead of them.

The former officer intends to file a wrongful termination claim against the city with the hopes of being reinstated. California workers should familiarize themselves with their company's social media policies. Employees who feel that they have used social media in compliance and faced adverse consequences at work, or employees who believe that their freedom of speech has been violated, may consider doing research on applicable laws.

Source: wowt.com, "Police officer fired over Facebook post", Jessica Dupnack, Aug. 21, 2015

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
  • Save To Favorites
  • Print This Page
  • Email Us
  • Site Map