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First Amendment Does Not Extend to Personal Grievances

July 27, 2021


The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a First Amendment retaliation claim by an employee who did not demonstrate he was punished for any speech or conduct protected by the First Amendment.

The plaintiff was a lieutenant with the Binghamton Police Department. Another officer in the department, who is Black, informed the plaintiff that he intended to file a race discrimination claim with the HR department. The plaintiff told his colleague that he would support him. Soon thereafter, the plaintiff learned that the chief was heard saying that the plaintiff’s “career is done.”

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