Equal Employment Oppurtunity and Employee Rights Essay
The Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972 is an amended title of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. “Title VII prohibits discrimination in hiring, compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment based on race, religion, color, sex, or national origin” of companies with “15 or more employees or members” (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2007). This title also forbids a company or organization to retaliate against an employee for making accusations of discrimination. The Civil Rights Act was amended in 1972 because it “left much to interpretation” (DeCenzo, 2007).
This is when the “Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)” was formed and given the power to investigate and file civil suits if the company or organization is found guilty of discriminative acts. The newly amended Title VII was not limited to privately owned companies or organizations but it also prohibits discrimination within “state and local governments” and “educational institutions” (DeCenzo, 2007, p. 61). Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 Not only are people discriminated against because of their “race, religion, color, sex, or national origin” but women are also victims of discrimination due to pregnancy.
This may be because employers do not want to be responsible for not only the employee’s safety but the safety of their unborn child as well. It could also be because they know that the employee will be leaving the company or organization for the allowed maturity leave. During this leave, the company will have to find a temporary employee to fulfill the employee’s position while on maturity leave. The Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 prevents this from happening.
Under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 “an employer cannot refuse to hire a pregnant woman because of her pregnancy, because of a pregnancy-related condition, or because of the prejudices of co-workers, clients, or customers” (The U. S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008). An employer has to treat a pregnant woman that has complications as they would a disabled person with the same benefits and treatments. Whistle-blowing Whistle-blowing is known as “a situation in which an employee notifies authorities of wrongdoing in an organization” (DeCenzo, 2007).
These wrongdoings range from abuse of power, theft, illegal activities such as dumping of waste, etc. Many employees may feel threatened or feel like retaliation may occur if they were to report an issue that is illegal or unethical and many companies have ‘at will policies’ where the employment and employer can terminate the employment for any reason. Laws and statutes have been formed in order to protect the employee and their employment when they report these illegal actions. Example Court Cases for Each Law A recent incident that involved the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972 (EEOC) happened to a Waffle House Employee.
Eric Baker had suffered a seizure while working and was fired by the company. He immediately filed a timely discrimination charge with the EEOC. He contended that is firing was violating the Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1190 (ADA). Afterwards the EEOC filed the enforcement suit, asserting that the company’s employment practices, including Baker’s discharge due to his disability had in fact violated the ADA and the violation was deliberate and done with reckless indifference as well as malice.
The complaint filed by the EEOC appealed injunctive relief to “eradicate the effects of [respondent’s] past and present unlawful employment practices”; specific relief designed to make Baker whole, including back pay, reinstatement, and compensatory damages; and punitive damages for malicious and reckless conduct (Reuters, 2013). A teacher was fired from a Christian school after she informed the administration she had become pregnant before her marriage. After she had told the administrator and assistant minister (John, and Julie Ennis) what happened she was fired only four days later.
They claim because she had sinned by engaging in premarital sex and that there are consequences for disobeying the word of God. Hamilton then sued for pregnancy discrimination under the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Greenwald, 2012). Unfortunately a lower court has dismissed the claim. Hamilton went on to sue under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 since it does protect rights to engage in premarital sex since the Title VII of the Civil rights act does not.
Hamilton has been able to produce evidence that she was fired due to the fact they were more apprehensive about her pregnancy and her request to take maternity leave than her admission of having premarital sex. A case of Whistle –Blowing resulted in a director of a 911 departments complaining to the board of commissioners. The complaint was that their plan to transfer monies from the ambulance account to another account violated a mileage proposal and was even in breach of contract. Afterwards the board put the money into the proper account and then combined the two positions which resulted in the elimination of the plaintiff’s position.
The director was given the explanation that the move was done due to budge problems and the county had no choice but to take costing measures to balance the budget. However, the proposed budget prepared only two months previous to the elimination of the position showed that the directions position was completely funded. The director prevailed at the trail and trial court was able to enter judgment on jury verdict. Equal Opportunity and Pregnancy Act Implications of HR Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972 has to deal with HR departments hiring process throughout their employee’s career.
This act prohibits discrimination from factors such as race, sex or religion, HR must carefully consider the implications of the questions they ask during the interviewing and application process. After hiring an employee, the HR department must handle any issues that may arise relating to discrimination in promotions and among coworkers, ensuring that treatment in the office is based on work performance alone. The Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 was established to prevent HR departments and small business owners from discriminating or laying off applicants or current female employees who were carrying a child.
This act brought on new regulations and force employers to purchase Family Temporarily Disability Insurance, which allowed expecting female employees to take a paid leave of absence without fear of losing their jobs. Whistle blowing is a recent issue creating difficulties for HR departments to maintain comfortable relationships between employees and employers. In the past, employees would be reluctant to report their superiors when they were caught doing something against policy. This reluctance has created issues in the American economy, which led to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.
Passed in July 2002, this Act protects employees from persecution if they report their bosses for doing something illegal (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2007). Compliant HR Policies Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972 (EEOC) We are committed to providing an environment where employees are valued and respected. All applicants for employment and current employees are extended equal employment opportunities without regard to race, color, citizenship, religion, national origin, age, gender, pregnancy, disability, veteran, current or future military status, or any other characteristic covered by law.
We are dedicated to Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO). Every person in a leadership role shares in the responsibility for carrying out our EEO goals. Equal opportunity calls for fair and equal treatment of employees and applicants in matters of employment, compensation, training and opportunities for advancement, transfers, and other conditions of employment. This practice has been and remains at the core of our business practices (Kinross, 2012).
Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 We comply with Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act as amended by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 and therefore, protect the rights of expectant mothers in our organization (HR Specialist, 2007). In accordance with our FMLA policy, employees may request family and medical leave for: the addition of a child to the family through birth, adoption, or placement by foster care (“parental leave”); a serious health condition of the employee’s spouse, child or parent; a serious health condition that prevents an employee from performing his or her job.
Additionally, women affected by pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions are also eligible for short term disability as the company recognizes it may be necessary for these employees to be absent from work due to pregnancy related medical conditions (Kinross, 2012). Whistle Blowing It is our policy to protect the company from unethical, illegal, or fraudulent acts that would result in loss or damage. Each of us shares in this responsibility equally. Therefore, it is our policy that all employees shall be free, without fear of retaliation, to make known allegations of lleged misconduct existing within the company that he or she reasonably believes has occurred.
These allegations may come in the form of a(n): violation of law or code; or substantial and specific danger to public health or safety, the environment; or abuse of authority, gross misconduct, or gross waste of misuse of company funds. The most direct way for an employee to report unethical, illegal, or fraudulent behavior is to talk with their direct supervisor. In cases where this is not practical, several alternative methods of reporting have been established. Please see the company’s “Whistleblower Policy” for more details (Kinross, 2012).