Social Media Regulations in the Senior Living Industry

Social media regulations in the Senior Living industryFacebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Reddit – do you know what your employees are saying about your senior living facility online? More importantly, do you know what your employee handbook says about employees’ use of social media? Recently, there have been several cases where certain employers’ handbook policies regarding employees’ uses of social media have been struck down by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). The Board found that the employers’ policy language was considered unlawful, under Section 8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations Act.

According to the Association of Corporate Counsel, employers cannot terminate or take disciplinary action against employees for complaints about work, terms and conditions of employment made to one another through social media. With these recent rulings, now might be a good time to review your employee handbook, practices and policies to be sure they comply with the Board’s interpretations of the law. The Association of Corporate Counsel recommends that you should review your social media policy and amend as needed to make clear that their prohibitions against disparaging or disloyal conduct do not extend to Section 7 protected activity. Section 7 of the NLRA protects concerted activity, meaning employees and their coworkers have the right to discuss, improve or change working conditions.

Employment practices liability coverage is one tool that helps protect you against the financial consequences of employee suits against you involving these matters. If you’re interested in a coverage review of your current insurance or would like to learn more about employment practices liability coverage for your senior living facility, the AssuredPartners NL team can help. For more information, please contact your AssuredPartners NL agent at AssuredPartners NL Senior Living.

This post is not intended to be exhaustive, nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice. Readers should contact legal counsel for legal advice.

Sources: Association of Corporate Counsel – NLRB says termination for Facebook postings about co-worker’s firing violated Federal Labor Law, Association of Corporate Counsel – NLRB offers additional advice on social media policies

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