Austin Bank Texas plus size employee fired after posting topless engagement photos: Was one employer within its rights to let a bank employee go after she posted photos on Facebook?
A plus size woman, an employee of Austin Bank Texas, pregnant with her first child, has been fired after posting what she deemed to be body positive photos on Facebook.
From there, the couple who have been together for two years, delved into an outdoor photo shoot, which featured them both topless.
While Arynn stayed in his jeans, five month pregnant, Stephanie stripped down to a bikini bottom for a river shoot.
The pictures, shot by Wolf & Rose Photography, were then posted on the photographer’s Facebook page, sparking a lot of feedback.
The posted photos received over 67,000 reactions on Facebook and thousands of comments calling the couple ‘beautiful’ and one stating, ‘I probably couldn’t love this more if I tried.’
One picture in particular shows the couple — both without shirts — passionately kissing while Stephanie straddles Arryn.
‘I honestly have never felt more attractive,’ Stephanie told HuffPost about the shoot. ‘I was so nervous to see the final result. I didn’t know what to expect. But when I saw the album, I was shocked. I look so in love and confident. Every person should be able to see themselves in that light. It is really eye-opening.’
Stephanie said she used to struggle with body-image, but over the years had come to terms with the fact that she will always be considered a plus-size woman.
She added that she frequently pushes herself to wear clothes that that she likes but ‘aren’t in society’s mold of what is acceptable for bigger women’, much like she did when she posed for the topless shoot.
Austin Bank Texas plus size employee fired: How far can one or ought to go on social media?
Though the reactions from both the couple and those on Facebook were largely positive, Stephanie’s employer, Austin Bank Texas, was less enthused about how the pictures turned out.
‘They said I was topless, and it was inappropriate and we’re a family-oriented company,’ Stephanie said to BuzzFeed.
Which is to wonder are some employers going too far to protect their public image, and at what point does one’s personal doings have anything to do with one’s performance at work? Then again, perhaps one oughtn’t tempt fate either given the wide documentation of employees who have been fired for controversial comments in the public arena, while at work or not.
In the end, Stephanie’s employer decided to let her go, citing the ‘too revealing images’ going against its ‘wholesome family values’ image.
Told Stephanie, ‘There was no defending myself, they had made their decision,’
Adding, ‘I gave over a year to a company that I worked really hard for and then to have them turn on me for doing something so positive, something that I was so proud of — to help myself as a woman — it was hurtful. People were pulling out their phones at work and showing the pictures and that was blamed on me.’
While Austin Bank Texas have declined to publicly comment, Twitter and Facebook users have since been quick to shame the financial entity over their decision.
Wolf & Rose Photography posted on their own Facebook page about the situation, saying, ‘I completely understand that it is perfectly within the company’s rights to terminate someone. Texas is an at will state, and legally her employer did nothing wrong, but I cannot help but wonder how a company who claims to uphold family values can morally terminate an otherwise model employee who is 20+ weeks pregnant with her first child.
‘Their decision not only stripped her of her insurance which is without a doubt a major necessity while pregnant, but also her paid maternity leave.’
But, the bride-to-be doesn’t feel bad about her choice to take the suggestive pictures.
‘Stephanie doesn’t regret doing the shoot,’ Bria Terry of Wolf & Rose Photography told Yahoo Lifestyle. ‘She said if it helped even one person feel more confident, it was worth it.’
Austin Bank Texas plus size employee fired: Not everyone agreed with Stephanie’s wisdom in posting said photos.
And then there were these reactions on the web that caught this author’s eye, see what you think?
Keep your private life ……private, or be very prepared for a public rebuttal. If her work contract or terms of employment have restrictions then she needs to abide by them or face the threat of sacking. Personally, I don’t need to see her body and artwork – neither are flattering or attractive. Put on some modesty, common sense and clothes, rather than disrobing your inhibitions.
Sometimes I yearn for the days of only being able to put your photos in a album and showing them to friends and family only when they asked.
“This for me was the one reason I was let go”….sounds like there is another side to the story.