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Connecticut bill proposed regarding employee speech

Connecticut employers will likely want to pay attention to Connecticut House Bill 6667. The bill is designed to create additional protection for workers concerning the right to voice concerns without retaliation.

Though it all sounds laudable, what will actually occur in practice is yet to be seen. Certain business associations feel passage of this bill would give employees the right to possibly defame the business for which they work without concerns that they may lose their job over such a practice. It is also feared that the bill may ultimately result in employees bringing more employment claims lawsuits against their employer.

Though it is generally agreed that workers should be able to address safety concerns to organizations such as OSHA without fear that they are going to lose their job, providing employees with the right to say almost anything believes will create unnecessary disruptions and disputes at the business place that otherwise would not be tolerated. There’s also concern that this actually takes aware legal protection from employers to utilize their discretion when it comes to decisions regarding individuals it can have working for the company.

Business attorneys only have limited say as to what will become law. In any case, passage of the law may mean that trying employment litigation type matters will be even more complicated than was already the case before any new bill was proposed.

Employers may need to become accustomed to legislation of this type being passed. Legislators that have never practiced in the private sector may nevertheless pass measures without fully understanding the consequences.

Source: Source: Clinton Patch, “Proposal Would ‘Create Chaos’ in the Workplace, Experts Say,” by Fay Abrahamsson, May 5, 2013

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