skip to main content
Back to all blog posts

Posted in: Media | Data Security/Privacy

May 10, 2016

Social Media in the Workplace: Screening of Prospective Employees

By Meghan A. Cowan

Social media is revolutionizing the way we interact with others - both personally and professionally. With the proliferation of social media use - from LinkedIn to Facebook to Twitter - it has never been easier to gain information about others from the internet.

In the context of the employment relationship and the hiring process, however, employers must exercise caution. For example, Ontario's Human Rights Code explicitly prohibits employers from hiring based on an employer's preference related to sex, ethnic origin, religion, sexual orientation, race, disability or family status. It goes without saying that these same considerations must be followed in the actual interview process itself.

While there is little actual case law on the impact of social media in hiring decisions, employers should develop and follow internal screening processes that comply with their obligations under the Human Rights Code. Having a policy and applying it consistently will assist an employer in the event that its hiring decisions are ever questioned.

Related Categories

Related Blogs

Posted in: Media | Communications

Insights TheSpotlight
‘Creative Canada’ – More Musings By Stephen Zolf Sep 29, 2017 Yesterday’s posts (here and here) outlined Netflix’s agreement with the government to invest a minimum of $500 million in original productions in Canada over the next five years. Under the agreement, Netflix “will also work to promote Canadian films and programs on its platform ...

Posted in: Media | Communications

Insights TheSpotlight
The Launch of ‘Creative Canada’: Some Brief Thoughts Following the Minister’s Speech By Stephen Zolf Sep 28, 2017 Following our earlier post, Minister Joly delivered her ‘Creative Canada’ speech at a noon-hour speech today. The speech included several noteworthy statements: “We pay some of the highest [Internet access] rates in the world. Our government won’t increase the cost of...

Posted in: Communications | Media

Insights TheSpotlight
Canada’s Cultural Funding Regime Receives Overhaul By Stephen Zolf Sep 28, 2017 The Canadian Minister of Heritage will officially launch 'Creative Canada' later today, which is the first major overhaul of Canada’s cultural funding regime in more than a quarter-century. A useful “10 key takeaway” points can be found here. The highest-profile measure (and sur...