The Texas Prison system is the latest employer to demand it’s employees Facebook passwords. The BACKGATE website reported late last month that employees around the state have run into bullying and threats over their personal facebook account access. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) contends that employees cannot have ex-offenders, family of ex-offenders, or even friends of friends of ex-offenders or their families on their facebook/Twitter friends list. An offense under this rule (rule #42) could spell termination with no chance of mediation for that employee. Although we understand the issue with ex-offenders or even ex-offenders families, how can it be proven you were aware of who was who ?
How can you know that the high school friend from 1985 you have not seen since then has a brother or sister that was once in prison ? Or may even once were themselves? Were does safety and security meet with common sense and violation of your rights ? Well, we will obviously be looking into this more closely over the next week or so. We will seek clarification by TDCJ, and see what the TDCJ unions, State Lawmakers, and even civil rights attorneys have to say about the practice. Facebook administrators have released a statement that read that they (facebook attorneys) would sue any agency or employer that required employees to turn over there passwords as it violates there own terms of service with their members.
With 1 in 22 people in Texas in jail, prison or under court supervision, it’s probably not a stretch that everyone knows someone in prison or connected to a prison. With 122 prisons, there are a lot of employees. Sources tell the BACKGATE “that a Sgt from the walls unit has already been fired over this. On one hand tdcj seems content on low wages along with zero concept of human resource management but also wants to control who and how we socialize with on the outside. Does the insanity ever end?”
Here are some other comments from Texas Prison guards:
This has less to do with keeping us from being friends with former offenders and everything to with keeping an eye on what we might be saying about our own administrations.They fear open dialog among officers about the rabbid hostile work environment that they are currently trying to create. From what I see so far this agency has no regard for it’s people what so ever. I say, don’t just talk about trained monkeys doing our job, I say, get those monkeys and start training them. The agency can then fire us all and use the monkeys. Or they can run the whole thing themselves. After all they don’t really need us, do they? As far as I can tell they would like to find a way to lock us in with the offenders and keep us from access to the outside world. The only reason these dishonorable people think so low of us is because when they were COs they were on the take and they assume all of us are just like them. People tend to judge others based on themselves, an example of this the cheating husband always thinks his wife cheats on him. What this agency really needs is regime change across the board. The low-life traitors to the constitution should be dressed in white. Anyone who willingly subverts the constitution and tramples the rights of free men shouldn’t be allowed to live in this state, much less hold a position of leadership. I choose to remain anonymous, as I would have to worry about being murdered by my administrator for voicing my opinion.
I know 2 officers that have been fired because of what they said on Facebook, and it had nothing to do with ex-inmate’s etc. they both were criticizing the way TDCJ is run,particularly the unit they were on. One main problem with this unit is the warden was never a CO and he has no idea what it’s like to do that job.He does eveything for the inmate’s and nothing for the employee’s.Except to write them up for every little thing he can and try to set them up so he can fire them.That unit has lost so many good officers it’s unreal.I am claiming anonymous because I still need the paycheck.
Very interesting since, according to TDCJ policy an ex-offender can be HIRED to work there after 7 years have passed since their time in prison. Someone really needs to go to the news stations with this. TDCJ is looking at several law suits over this I’ll bet!
I don’t think that TDCJ would even stoop to this level… If so, then hell NO I would rather tell them to give me a check from unemployment than give up a password so they can access my info, if they want to see my friends, then send a friend request, maybe I’ll accept it, or maybe I won’t… Pay for my Password, then maybe I will make enough money to sue the ass out of the State for the privacy issue….
I found the last comment interesting because the State of Texas is just about the most secretive organization on the planet going to tremendous extremes to keep things from the public. One example is Governor Perry’s travel details which are TOP SECRET.