Freedom Of Speech Is A Human Right Essay

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Freedom of speech is a human right guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States. Yet, in the worlds of public and private employment, employers have some limited rights with regard to the things their employees can say. These generally differ for public and private employees. The main basis for this difference is the fact that public employees offer their services to the Government, which in turn is to act in the interest of the public. Hence, public employees who speak out in the interest of the public tend to be offered a relative amount of freedom when it comes to what they are allowed to say in and about the workplace (Hudson, 2002).

Public employers include the police, education institutions, and city government institutions. Employees can work at the federal, state, or local government level. According to Hudson (2002), public employees do not have freedom to criticize governments for corruption, belong to a particular political party, criticize agency policy, or engage in private conduct that would put the employer in a bad light. Hence, these employees...

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They are, however, allowed to speak out against government and employer practices that affect the public, in whose employ they effectively are. When such speech is, however, to the disruption of the employer's place of business in terms of running a public institution, the employee is limited in what he or she can say.
Public employees, however, enjoy more freedom of speech than private employees. A private employee is far more restricted than either the general public or public employees when it comes to free speech. According to Dolgow (2012), for example, one private company employee was fired for speaking out against his employer's homophobic principles. In a public institution, however, these employers would be expected to adhere to the principles that the Constitution guarantees, such as the rights of same-sex couples to marry in the states where this right has been legalized. Free speech is therefore significantly more limited in private institutions than in public ones. According to…

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Dolgow, M. (2012, Aug. 3). Where Free Speech Goes to Die: The Workplace. Bloomberg Businessweek: Companies and Industries. Retrieved from: http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-08-03/where-free-speech-goes-to-die-the-workplace

Hudson, D.L. (2002, Dec.) Balancing Act: Public Employees and Free Speech. First Reports 3(2). Retrieved from: http://www.firstamendmentcenter.org/madison/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/FirstReport.PublicEmployees.pdf

Supreme Court of the United States. (2009, Oct.). Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. Retrieved from: http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/09pdf/08-205.pdf


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