Employees should be able to say what they'd like about their employer, their working conditions or even their wages on their Facebook pages and not be disciplined by the boss because of it.
That's essentially the message that's being sent today with news of a legal settlement between a Connecticut ambulance company and a former employee, who was discharged for boss-bashing on Facebook.
The National Labor Relations Board today said that the American Medical Response of Connecticut, Inc., in settling a case with an employee who was fired after posting negative comments about her supervisor on Facebook, has agreed to revise "its overly-broad rules" in its employee handbook regarding "blogging, Internet posting and communications between employees," though it was unclear whether the terminated employee would be re-hired.
The NLRB had argued in its November 2010 filing that, under the National Labor Relations Act, employees are permitted to discuss the terms and conditions of their employment with co-workers and others - regardless of whether those conversations take place at the water cooler, in a bar after work or, yes, even on a Facebook page.
Because the employees comments on the Facebook page evolved into a conversation with others about the working conditions, it should have been protected under the Act, - the same act that gives workers a federally protected right to form unions and keeps their bosses from punishing them for talking about work conditions or unionization.