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Aimee Delaney Weighs in on Google Engineer Firing Post-Memo

August 11, 2017

Aimee Delaney, a Chicago-based partner and leader of the Labor & Employment Practice Group at Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP, was recently cited in articles reporting on the legality of Google’s termination of one of its engineers, who posted a 10-page memo questioning the company's gender diversity policies. Delaney specifically weighed in on how high profile decisions that get significant media attention can complicate matters for an employer.

In Corporate Counsel's "Google Engineer Firing: 'No-Brainer' or More Complicated," Delaney circumspectly notes that when it comes to high profile termination decisions, general counsel must "make the assessment to understand the risk, based on [their] own corporate culture and needs." She then adds that "over the last decade employers very frequently are dealing with employees posting something out in the universe of the internet that bleeds into the workplace, and they ask, 'Now what do we do?'" If speech, however, violates a company’s code of conduct, the company must take some action.

Read "Google Engineer Firing: 'No-Brainer' or More Complicated" on the Corporate Counsel website

In a Law360 article "Google Memo Author's NLRB Charge Tees Up Tough Fight," emphasis is on the involvement of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in relation to the Google memo, as James Damore filed a charge with the NLRB alleging that Google "interfered with and restrained his right to engage in 'protected, concerted activity' under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act." "This is more often than not the forum where social media termination [cases] go," said Aimee Delaney. "The NLRB is where I would have expected [Damore's case] to go. It's the best of what can be some otherwise limited avenues."

Read "Google Memo Author's NLRB Charge Tees Up Tough Fight" on the Law360 website

Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP is a national law firm with over 450 attorneys providing coordinated legal services across the United States and in London. Hinshaw lawyers partner with businesses, governmental entities and individuals to help them effectively address legal challenges and seize opportunities. Founded in 1934, the firm represents clients in complex litigation and in regulatory and transactional matters.

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