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Politics

Updated 12/16/2016

  Politics was once conducted by gentlemen, having
  a scholarly debate of relevant facts before the
  voters.  My have things changed.  This is why you
  may want to avoid the multiple landmines that
  can damage your career and image in public. 
  The times have changed so be careful out there.


  
  Much could, should and most likely will be discussed for decades about the 2016
  election cycle and not limited to candidate selection or how their supporters engaged
  in questionable or unethical acts but to follow a path rarely taken during this election:
  the proven facts and laws
.

  The source for the information below is from Holland & Knight's 

  Material provided by Holland & Knight, LLP the following information is offered at:
                                       https://www.hklaw.com/Publications/Politics-in-the-Workplace-What-Must-Employers-Allow-07-19-2016/

  Concept 1:     Employees Have a Constitutional Right to Talk "Politics" at Work

According to HKLaw.com, Employees, as well as many employers,
commonly but mistakenl
y believe that the First Amendment to the U.S.
Constitution guarantees "freedom of speech" at work.

In fact, the First Amendment applies only to government action and neither limits the rights of private employers to regulate employees' communications nor provides any constitutional right for those workers to express thoughts or opinions in the offices and factories of private employers.

Many employers to have policies limiting the discussion of political candid
ates and issues at work because of the risks of unlimited "free speech" in the workplace.  For example, although there is no general federal law prohibiting employment discrimination on the basis of political affiliation or actions, sometimes seemingly neutral conversations about "politics" can lead to claims of employer discrimination, harassment or retaliation violating federal or state discrimination laws.


  Concept 2:     Employees Must Always be Allowed to Display and Distribute Political
                        Materials and "Campaign" in the Workplace

                        The article indicates this is also wrong.

                        Employers generally have the right to adopt and enforce non-
                        discriminatory rules prohibiting non-work-related activities in their
                        workplaces, including "purely political" activities. For example, employers
                        may ban employees from displaying or distributing materials that are
                        purely political in nature; soliciting co-workers or customers to support
                        purely political causes; using the employer's computer and email systems
                        to engage in purely political communications; or wearing buttons, shirts
                        or other items of clothing with purely political messages. Such activities
                        are not protected by the NLRA. In addition, employees who engage in
                        such activities in violation of the employer's published policies may be
                        lawfully disciplined or discharged.

As before additional information is provided at the above link on this item.  

  Information is also provided for Employers under "What Should an Employer Do?"

  A Sample of State Laws Addressing Workplace "Political Activity" is provided for:
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Illinois
  • Maryland
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Oregon
  • Texas
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  
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