Can Employees Express their Political Views through Social Media?
The High Court has recently struck down a ruling that a Federal Government department unjustifiably trespassed on the implied constitutional rights of an employee when her employment was terminated over making political tweets.
- the employee brought an unlawful termination claim after her employment had been terminated for making political tweets about her employer, the Department of Immigration and Border Protection
- the employee argued that her employer had imposed an unreasonable burden on the employee’s implied freedom of political communication
- the employee had previously succeeded in bringing a claim before the Administrative Appeals Tribunal that dismissing her for anonymous tweets highly critical of government policy trespassed on her implied constitutional rights and failed the “reasonable management action” test
- the High Court though affirmed the decision by Comcare to deny the employee’s claim for compensation for a psychological condition allegedly aggravated by her dismissal and ruled that it did not constitute an injury because her employer took “reasonable management action”