STATE POLICY ON EMPLOYEE COMMUNICATION TO EXTERNAL GROUPS
The State of Delaware supports the right of employees to communicate their views to the General Assembly and other public boards and entities. When State employees attend and participate in hearings or public meetings as private citizens, meaning other than as a representative of their employing State agency or the Administration, the following guidelines shall apply:
- Employees shall attend on their personal time. For hearings or meetings occurring during employees' scheduled work times, they may request approval of Annual Leave Accrued Compensatory Time or Leave Without Pay in the same manner as any leave request is made. All leave requests are subject to approval, which shall not be unreasonably denied.
- Employees attending public hearings or meetings in their private capacity as citizens shall not suggest or imply in any way that they are acting in an official capacity. Where the circumstances of an employee's appearance, testimony and/or remarks could create the impression that an employee is acting in other than a private capacity, the employee should clearly articulate to members of the General Assembly, other public officials and citizens, and the media, that the employee is attending/speaking as a citizen in the employee's private capacity, and that the employee is neither representing the State or any agency nor do the employee's views necessarily represent the position of the State or any agency.
- If employees are in doubt as to whether their actions would constitute a potential conflict of interest or whether their advocacy conduct would trigger registration as a lobbyist, they are encouraged to consult the State's Public Integrity Commission.
- Failure to comply with this policy may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination.
- Employees shall not use State of Delaware letterhead, electronic mail, equipment or other State supplies to communicate their personal views concerning non-work related matters.
- No provision of this policy is intended to create any individual right or legal cause of action that does not already exist under state or federal law.