Garcetti v. Ceballos
What's at Stake
Reviewing whether a government whistleblower forfeits all First Amendment protection by speaking out in the course of his or her job. DECIDED
A deputy district attorney in Los Angeles alleged that his superiors retaliated against him for suggesting that a criminal prosecution should be dismissed because it was tainted by police misconduct. Both the county and the United States concede that this speech involved a matter of public concern but argue that it was nonetheless unprotected by the First Amendment because it was made in the course of the plaintiff’s normal job responsibilities. The ACLU’s amicus brief challenges this cramped view of the First Amendment as both unprecedented and unwise.