Content Moderator Claims PTSD From Reviewing Images Posted On Facebook

A former Facebook content moderator, Selena Scola, is suing Facebook alleging that she developed Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from reviewing disturbing material on a daily basis as part of her job duties.

Scola worked at Facebook from June 2017 until March 2018. She alleges that as part of her job, she witnessed thousands of acts of extreme and graphic violence.” As a content moderator, Scola enforced the social network’s rules prohibiting certain types of content on its systems. Scola alleges that she developed PTSD “as a result of constant and unmitigated exposure to highly toxic and extremely disturbing images at the workplace.” Facebook hired Scola through a third-party contracting company, Pro Unlimited. The complaint also charges the Boca Raton, Fla.-based contracting company with violating California workplace safety standards.

Facebook relies on thousands of moderators and A.I. to determine whether posts violate its rules against violence, hate speech, child exploitation, nudity and disinformation. The Company will be hiring another 20,000 globally. Scola’s lawsuit also demands that Facebook and its third-party outsourcing companies provide content moderators with proper mandatory on-site and ongoing mental health treatment and support, and establish a medical monitoring fund for testing and providing mental health treatment to former and current moderators.

Companies with content moderators will need to consider safety measures to ensure safe working conditions for these employees, although workers’ compensation insurance coverage is intended to cover workplace injuries such as PTSD. It is interesting to note that this lawsuit was filed in superior court as opposed to the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board. For any questions about setting up a workplace safety program, please give us a call at Toll Free 1-562-888-0126 or email sales@yourvirtualhr.com for more information.

To view the full article from Washington Post By Elizabeth Dwoskin, posted on September 24, 2018, click here.

Starbucks Planning Layoffs

Starbucks Corporation is planning to shake-up its organization. This move will include corporate layoffs starting at top levels, as the company tries to reverse stagnant sales and rekindle investors’ interest in the company.

The organizational changes will begin in late September and continue into November 2018. As of October 1, 2017, Starbucks employed about 10,000 in U.S. support facilities, store development, and roasting, manufacturing, warehousing and distribution operations.

For any questions about layoffs, including compliance with the Warn Act, please give us a call at Toll Free 1-562-888-0126 or email sales@yourvirtualhr.com for more information.

For more information on this topic, see Bloomberg News here.

Female Workers Sue Facebook For Alleged Discriminatory Job Ads

A group of female workers claim that Facebook and 10 other employers engaged in unlawful gender discrimination by excluding them from job ads. The ACLU, Outten & Golden LLP, and the Communications Workers of America (CWA) have filed the charges with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) against Facebook and 10 other employers, on behalf of the female workers. According to the lawsuit, Facebook posted job ads to male Facebook users only, and excluded women from receiving the ads.

The charges were filed on behalf of three female workers, CWA and the hundreds of thousands of female workers CWA represents. According to the charges, most of the employers’ male-targeted ads highlighted jobs in male-dominated fields. The lawsuit also alleges that Facebook delivers job ads selectively based on age and sex categories that employers specifically choose, and that Facebook earns revenue from these ads.

In general, online platforms are not liable for publishing content created by others; however, counsel for the workers asserts that Facebook can be held liable for: (1) creating and operating a system that allows employers to select the gender and age of the people who get their job ads, including providing employers with data on users’ gender and age for targeting purposes; (2) delivering the gender- and age-based ads based on employers’ preferences; and (3) acting as a recruiter connecting employers with prospective employees.

In December of 2017, a similar lawsuit, Communications Workers of America et alvTMobile US Incet al., was filed against T-Mobile, Amazon, Cox Communications, and numerous other employers alleging a discriminatory practice of excluding older workers from receiving job ads on Facebook for available positions at their companies.

Employers, HR administrators, and risk managers should scrutinize recruiting practices to ensure that ads and other recruiting tools are targeted to a diverse group, unless there is a bona fide occupational qualification that can justify a specific group. For any questions, please give us a call at Toll Free 1-562-888-0126 or email sales@yourvirtualhr.com for more information.

For more information about this lawsuit click here: ACLU Sues Facebook and Other Company’s For Gender Discrimination in Job Ads.