News about government transparency and accountability
The Brechner Report
Freeing public employees from unlawful interview-approval rules: A Brechner Center issue brief
Government agencies throughout the country are enforcing broad policies forbidding public employees from speaking to the news media without approval, even though federal courts repeatedly have declared such policies unconstitutional, the Brechner Center for Freedom of Information documents in a new report.
The Brechner Center issue brief, “The First Amendment and Public Employees’ Right to Speak to the Media,” documents nearly two dozen instances in which courts have struck down workplace policies that forbid employees from giving interviews without approval from a supervisor or a public-relations officer. Despite this string of court victories for employees, the issue brief finds agencies at all levels of government — federal, state and local – continue restricting their employees’ speech in legally questionable ways.