SB 5211 would make it illegal for employers to demand and/or ascertain their employees social media passwords. It's surprising that this isn't already illegal. considering that it's a gross invasion of the employee's privacy by his/her employer.
The bill, which was recently passed by the Legislature, would stop the employer from accessing any social media that isn't publically available. This bill would allow the employees to sue companies that violate their privacy.
Social media is just that, a social activity. An employer has the right to hold staff accountable for things he/she may post publically. If an employer sees that an employee isn't behaving up to the company's standards in public venues, they have the right to reprimand the employee.
But on the other hand, if an employer peers into what an employee is keeping private, it's an overreach by the employer. The employee has the right to keep private information from anyone, including his employer.
Although this issue isn't an epidemic yet, why not stop it before it becomes one? Gov. Jay Inslee should sign this law and stop companies from intruding on their employees' privacy now, and this will never have to be an issue. Call the governor at 360-902-4111 to voice your support of SB 5211.
DOMINIK BRENNING, Kennewick