Think you can keep employees from grousing about their bosses online? You might find out otherwise when just such a case goes before a judge in January.
The National Labor Relations Board, the independent, quasi-judicial body that settles disputes over labor practices, especially those concerning collective bargaining, issued a complaint last week from its Hartrford, Conn., office alleging that a Connecticut ambulance service illegally fired an employee over a Facebook post. It’s the first such action of its kind.
“An NLRB investigation found that the employee’s Facebook postings constituted protected concerted activity, and that the company’s blogging and internet posting policy contained unlawful provisions,” the press release about the complaint states.
The company, American Medical Response of Connecticut, had a policy that included prohibiting employees from bashing the company or talking about the company online at all without permission, the press release says.
The company claims the firing wasn’t just over the Facebook post, but was a response to a number of behavioral problems over time.