This recent report serves as a good reminder to employers of the potential difficulties of social media use by its employees. The employer dismissed the employee and is now being sued for unfair dismissal and discrimination.
We live in a digital world and most employees own a smartphone, making it easy for them to post their opinions on social media forums. Diligent employers will therefore want to ensure they minimise the risk of any employment relationship fallouts as a result of social media use. Two important steps to help achieve this are:
- Have a comprehensive social media policy to give guidance to employees about appropriate and inappropriate social media use; and
- Provide proper training on the issues (and give refresher training periodically).
Kristie Higgs, 43, was removed from her post as a pastoral assistant at a Gloucestershire academy after a disciplinary panel found she had discriminated against its gay, lesbian and transgender pupils. Higgs, who had worked at Farmor’s school in Fairford, Gloucestershire, for six years, posted objections to the use of two children’s books at her son’s Church of England primary school on her Facebook page. She invited her Facebook followers to sign a petition against compulsory sex education in primary schools, due to be introduced next year. It comes as some teachers call for lessons on age-appropriate LGBT relationships to be made compulsory in primary schools in England...