Kagan Stern Partner Quoted in National Automotive Publication

June 21, 2020

    Automotive News, a national automotive publication, published an article on June 13, 2020 entitled, “Retailers deal with fallout over racist employee posts,” authored by Jackie Charniga.  The article examines various issues employers face when an employee engages in racist behavior and other off duty misconduct.  Automotive News contacted Kagan Stern Partner, Stephen Stern, to get his perspective on certain legal issues when employers evaluate how to handle employees who engage in such conduct.  Mr. Stern noted that, although most employment is at-will, some states have enacted statutes that protect certain types of off duty conduct.  One example of such a statute is Section 201-d of the New York Labor Law, which protects employees who engage in “political activities” and “recreational activities” (as those terms are defined in the statute) outside of working hours.  When an employee engages in improper off duty conduct that affects the company’s business, however, Mr. Stern noted it is understandable that the company may take action to protect its business interests.  One specific question posed to Mr. Stern concerned the use of social media posts as evidence.  Mr. Stern stated, “You still have to go through the process to get [social media posts] admitted properly, but it is certainly evidence that can be – and has been – used in a variety of cases.”  The following is a link to the article: https://www.autonews.com/marketing/retailers-deal-fallout-over-racist-employee-posts.

    Mr. Stern and other attorneys at Kagan Stern advise employers on to how to handle off duty misconduct by employees, as well as many other legal issues for businesses across many industries.