When government employers are held accountable for unacceptable behavior through employment discrimination suits, the settlement or judgment awards are often paid with tax payer money. As a result, large damage awards paid by local governments tend to make headlines.
It has become apparent that social media is blurring the line between work and private life. Unfortunately, unless this line is clearly defined and stays fixed, it can create a multitude of problems for both employees and employers.
In March, we wrote about the latest troubling trend in the job market. A growing number of public and private employers are requiring job applicants to provide their Facebook account passwords and allow the company to snoop around. At the very least, some employers are asking applicants to log into their account on a company computer and let the interviewer have full access to their personal social media information.
Facebook and other social media sites continue to provide much fuel for controversy between employers and employees, as well as those seeking employment. Several of our previous posts have discussed employees who have faced retaliation or wrongful termination due to comments they made on Facebook which either disparaged the company or a supervisor.
Employers sometimes have the right to investigate an employee's personal life when challenging a work-related claim, but the circumstances in which this is allowed are limited. Certainly, employers should not be allowed to question or harass an employee about the nature of their divorce.