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One of the big topics in this lesson is diversity and the benefits of diversity: In addition to benefits, there may be deficits. In this lesson we look at both. Again we look at the ethical considerations, not the practicalities or admission of the program.
Here is a truncated example of the assignment. Your response should be longer and address multiple issues.
1. Employee Anderson complains that setting aside a room for Muslim employees to use for prayer is fine, but excusing them several times a day is unfair, as other employees don’t get those extra breaks. Sounds like discrimination to me.
2. Email to Anderson, ” Thank you etc….Our intention is to respect the religious preference of all staff, and to afford them a workplace which supports the whole person, including their spiritual preferences. It is our intention to accommodate all employee’s needs as much as we can and as mandated by law. We will be happy to look into this matter and get back to yo within 30 days” (Issues include equity, diversity, freedom of religion, reasonable accommodation, parity, equal pay for equal work, contractual obligations, undue burden, diversity in hiring)
Email to HR. “Dear..etc, please review the pattern of breaks used by the staff mentioned and ensure they do not exceed two fifteen minute breaks, and a 30 minute lunch, or ask the employees to adjust their start or end times to ensure they have 8 hours work between 7:00AM and 6:00PM. The issue is both religious freedom and equity. The Muslim staff should be free to worship, but that cannot have the same pay for fewer work hours. They can take, for example a ten minute prayer break, but then have only 5 minutes left of their 15 minute break. They need to have breaks at certain times which can be checked, but cannot be spied on, because they do not have to pray and have the right to privacy. Other staff must have the same amount of time on and off the job.
1. Read all three vignettes and select ONEof these three vignettes and write two emails, and a list of issues involved.
2. Your first is to the complaining employee, ad dressing the complaint and (after the email)explaining the ethical rationale behind it. You do not need to use the term “ethics”. Follow up with a list of the ethical issues involved.
3. Your second email to to the HR department addressing any ethical concerns that the disgruntled employee made you think of.
Vignette 1: Employee Lloyd writes” I need to know why 32 the male officers in this department had to give up half their breakroom to this new “lactation room” when there are only 5 women. They can use our breakroom, but we cannot use that room even if it is empty. Sounds like discrimination to me.”
Vignette 2. Employee Jones writes, ” Can you stop the employees chattering all day in Tagalog and Spanish. They all can speak English but they keep lapsing into their own lingo and I don’t understand it. I know they’re not talking about me, they use a few English words, but is annoying and excludes us Americans. Sounds like discrimination to me..”
Vignette 3. Employee Jim VanderBoom writes” Can we stop hiring immigrants? When I got here the workforce was all locals and we had a lot in common, we even had American food choices in the canteen. Now we are hiring people from all over, offering all sorts of smelly food, even “vegan meat”! And none of them know anything about our culture or show any interest. I’m increasingly a minority in my own country. Sounds like discrimination to me.”
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