Kenyan Court Bars Meta From Sacking Facebook Moderators

A court in Nairobi has reportedly barred Meta, Facebook's parent company, from laying off its content moderators pending determination of a lawsuit that is challenging their planned dismissal.

The suit alleges that the social media giant instructed their new content moderation partner, Majorel, to blacklist them. These former employees are also suing their former employer, Sama, claiming they were given the boot in an unlawful manner, according to reports.

The labour court has now ordered Meta not to hire other moderators to replace the fired ones.

The content moderators have reportedly taken Meta and two outsourcing companies - Majorel and Sama - to court, a tech rights group has said. A total of 43 workers for outsourcing company Sama, who moderated Facebook content, are bringing the lawsuit for what they allege was "unlawful dismissal" under Kenyan law.

In January 2023, 260 content moderators working at Facebook's moderation hub in Nairobi were reportedly told they would be made redundant by Sama, the outsourcing firm which has run the office since 2019.

The moderators have told the court that they have been given "varying and confusing" explanations for the redundancy. Meta and Sama have been given a week to respond to the application. The case will be heard on March 28, 2023.


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