'Public Concern' In Public Employee Petitions

Law360, New York (June 23, 2011, 6:08 PM EDT) -- The United States Supreme Court just added another important chapter to its continuing interpretation of the First Amendment rights of public employees.

In Borough of Duryea v. Guarnieri (June 20, 2011, No. 09-1476), decided Monday, June 20, 2011, the court held that public employees cannot assert retaliation claims based on the First Amendment right to petition unless their “petitioning” in question involves a matter of public concern. What qualifies as “petitioning” can be a grievance, or even a lawsuit against the employer, but a constitutional retaliation...
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