Kendall | Mandell, along with ACLU of Georgia, filed a lawsuit challenging the unlawful termination of Johnny Cook. Mr. Cook was fired for expressing concerns on his personal Facebook profile that a child was left hungry and denied lunch at school. He joined a national debate focused on the well-being of children and adequacy of school lunch policies. When Mr. Cook refused to allow his voice, thoughts, property, and image to be hijacked, commandeered, censored, and illegally appropriated by the Haralson County school system, he was fired.
The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution forbids government officials from retaliating against employees who speak out on their own time on important community issues, even if those issues are critical of government practices and policies.
The lawsuit argues that Mr. Cook’s First Amendment right to free speech was violated by the Haralson County School District and Superintendent Brett Stanton, both named as defendants.