Meta, owner of Facebook, has banned its workers from openly discussing the Supreme Court ruling, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which overturned women’s constitutionally guaranteed abortion rights in the landmark 1973 case, Roe v. Wade.
The case sends the abortion debate back to the states.
Meta stands out among corporate America’s response to the Supreme Court ruling, with many other major U.S. corporations—Meta among them—limiting their response, instead, to reimbursing workers in search of an abortion who have to travel across state lines.
A May 12 company memo stated there are “strong guardrails around social, political and sensitive conversations” in the workplace, The New York Times reports.
“Discussing abortion openly at work has a heightened risk of creating a hostile work environment,” Meta management said in the memo.
Meta employees were quick to express their displeasure over the new company policy. Meta software engineer Ambroos Vaes wrote In a LinkedIn post that he is “saddened” he cannot discuss the blockbuster Supreme Court decision with coworkers.
Meta’s decision followed heated debates after the death of George Floyd in the summer of 2020 and the subsequent conviction of three Minneapolis police officers in his demise.
Meta workers being outspoken on social issues dates as far back as 2016, when employees crossed out
and replaced the phrase “Black Lives Matter” with “All Lives Matter” on a company wall. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg called the act “disrespectful and malicious.”
Known for being a liberal Democrat, Zuckerberg may have directed the clamp down on abortion discussions to silence those in favor of the Supreme Court’s constitutionally grounded, anti-abortion ruling.
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