Baltimore FD implement 'strict' social media policy
The new policy is drawing criticism because some say it violates First Amendment rights and was created unilaterally
By Kevin Rector
The Baltimore Sun
BALTIMORE — The Baltimore Fire Department has implemented a strict new social media policy for what firefighters can post on Twitter, Facebook and personal blogs — drawing criticism that the department is trampling on First Amendment rights.
Under the policy, department personnel can be reprimanded for anything they write online about their jobs that doesn't adhere to conduct rules, which require "good judgment" and "courtesy and respect to the public and to fellow employees." The policy also restricts them from sharing information about fire scenes.
Fire Chief James S. Clack said the department crafted the policy to protect firefighters from getting into trouble for sharing sensitive information.