ACLU of Colorado Defends Right of Public Employee to Wear Button to Work

Freedom of Expression & Religion


The ACLU of Colorado defended the right of a public employee to wear a three and one-half inch button that said “U.S. Out of Iraq.” The employee’s supervisor forced him to remove the button, stating that it was “inappropriate for the workplace” because of it’s size and color. The supervisor claimed that he was not discriminating against the content of the speech. In a letter to the supervisor and other authorities in the public agency, however, the ACLU of Colorado noted that the employee’s button was identical in size and similar in color to another button addressing a different issue that the supervisor had allowed all employees to wear. The supervisor relented, and the employee was allowed to wear the button to work indefinitely. The employee wrote the ACLU of Colorado, “I want to thank you very much for all your indispensable work. Like I said, without your help the [employer] would have swept this all under the rug. You were essential and I’ll never forget it.”


Mark Silverstein , ACLU of Colorado Legal Director

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