Idaho Supreme Court Boots Appeal by Buhl Nurse Fired For Facebook Post


The Idaho Supreme Court has rejected an appeal made by a Buhl nursing home nurse who was fired for posting on Facebook that he'd like to "slap the ever loving bat snot out of a patient," the Twin Falls Times-News reports. 

Joseph Talbot, a former nurse at Desert View Care Center, posted the status in January 2013. In that same status, he also wrote that when patients insulted him on the job it made him less motivated to "make sure your call light gets answered every time." After being fired for making the post, Talbot applied for unemployment benefits through the Idaho Department of Labor, but the Idaho Industrial Commission blocked the disbursement of benefits, saying that Talbot's post constituted employment-related misconduct by violating Desert View's social media policy.

Talbot's appeal to the Idaho Supreme Court argued that he had not been made aware of Desert View's social media policy and had been unjustly fired. The Idaho Supreme Court rejected his appeal June 20.

Social media policies in Idaho have been making headlines lately. In October 2013, Laraine Cook,  a Pocatello High School basketball coach, was fired over a Facebook post in which her fiance, Tom Harrison, touched her right breast. In the wake of that controversy, which concluded with Cook being reinstated as a substitute teacher and being rehired as the school's basketball coach in 2014, the Pocatello School Board met June 17 to discuss a new social media policy "to improve awareness of the employee engaging in conduct which could result in negative consequences to employment and licensure status."