Friday 20 May 2022 07:28 AM Meta tells workers NOT to mention abortion on internal chat platforms trends now
Facebook employees were told to stop discussing abortion at work after the subject has become 'the most divisive and reported topic' on the company's internal chat system.
Executives at Meta, its parent company, allege abortion discussions on Workplace, an internal social media platform, have put the organization at 'an increased risk' of being seen as a 'hostile work environment,' The Verge reported.
VP of HR Janelle Gale, during a town hall meeting Thursday, told staff the abortion discussions isolate certain employees and are harmful to the work environment.
'Even if people are respectful, and they're attempting to be respectful about their view on abortion, it can still leave people feeling like they're being targeted based on their gender or religion,' she said. 'It's the one unique topic that kind of trips that line on a protected class pretty much in every instance.'
Executives also argued that discussing abortion on company platforms was a violation of Meta's Respectful Communication Policy, which prohibits employees from discussing 'opinions or debates about abortion being right or wrong, availability or rights of abortion, and political, religious, and humanitarian views on the topic.'
The policy, which has reportedly been in effect since 2019, has caused division among employees after a leaked Supreme Court draft opinion revealed the court has voted to strike down the landmark 1973 ruling Rove v. Wade, which legalized abortion in the United States.
Meta employees were told to stop discussing abortion at work after the subject has become 'the most divisive and reported topic' on the company's internal social media platform
Some Meta employees have called on management to eliminate the abortion policy, arguing that it contradicts rules allowing workers to talk 'respectfully' about other hot-button issues like Black Lives Matter, immigration and transgender rights.
'The same policy explicitly allows us to discuss similarly sensitive issues and movements including immigration, trans rights, climate change, Black Lives Matter, gun rights / gun control, and vaccination,' a female employee, who worked at Meta for 10 years, argued, alleging the policy caused her to feel a 'strong sense of silence and isolation on Workplace.'
VP of HR Janelle Gale, during a town hall meeting Thursday, told staff the abortion has become the 'the most divisive and reported topic' on Workplace and that the discussions have isolated certain employees
'The argument about why our policy treats one issue quite differently than other sensitive issues feels flimsy and unconvincing to me,' she added. 'The entire process of dealing with the Respectful Communication policy, being told why my post is violating, and crafting this new post has felt dehumanizing and dystopian.'
While many staff have expressed frustration about the apparent double standards surrounding 'respectful' content, The Verge reports that some workers have issued their support for banning discussions about the divisive topic.
The policy, although in place for years, seems to be have poorly managed as Meta's number-two executive, Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, herself, addressed Roe v Wade on her public Facebook page earlier this month.
Sandberg, in a post on May 3, responded to the leaked SCOTUS draft and called abortion 'one of our most fundamental rights.'
'Every woman, no matter where she lives, must be free to choose whether and when she becomes a mother,' she posted. 'Few things are more important to women's health and equality.'
The day after she publicly supported Roe v Wade, Meta reportedly dropped the hammer and started enforcing the communications policy.
Meta's number-two executive, Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg addressed Roe v Wade on her public Facebook page earlier