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Employee Fired over Facebook Post Reinstated with Full Back Pay by NLRB
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On Thursday, last week, the National Labor Relations Board ruled in favor of an employee fired by his company over making a Facebook post on working conditions. In the decision given on May 2, the administrative law judge presiding on the matter ordered reinstatement with full back pay.

The employer company, New York Party Shuttle, admitted in the proceedings that it had fired the employee, Fred Pflantzer over an email and the Facebook post, and they would not have terminated his job otherwise.

  
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So, what was in the email and the Facebook post that led to the termination of Pflantzer’s job?

Pflantzer, who was a guide, wrote on a Facebook page for New York tour guides, “As you all well know, we have a right to organize in this country, a right protected by the US Government. Needless to say I started to agitate for a union. Guess what happened, I stopped being called for work.”

The judge held that Pflantzer had been fired illegally.

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The ruling possibly indicates greater freedom for employees to make workplace organizing efforts on social media.

It also possibly means when targeted employees are fired, employers would no more cite their social media activities as cause of concern or termination without thoroughly considering legal consequences.



The NLRB decision mentioned that Pflantzer’s firing violated the National Labor Relations Act which permits employees to work together to improve working conditions.

Whether Pflantzer would return to work for the company is not known, as he now runs his own tour guide company. However, the back pay is going to be collected, without doubt.

However, Pflantzer remains skeptical and believes his past employer would delay paying up and would continue with its poor labor practices.



 

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