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Tutorial 12

Job discrimination & Sexual

Q1 : Do you agree that affirmative action
programmes are discriminatory and
should therefore be opposed? Discuss.
Definition of Affirmative action

Programs taking races and sex of employee into account as a part to
correct the imbalances in employment that exist as a result of the
past discrimination, either to the company itself or in the larger
More than a paper work, involves policies, practices, and procedures.
Company contracted with government are required to develop
affirmative action.
Brown v Board of Education case, Executive Order 10925, Equal Pay
Act, Civil Rights Act, Age discrimination in employment act.

Why NEED Affirmative Action ?
To compensate justice help repair the past
Permit fair competition
allow equal job opportunity
increase diversity in the company
Allow minorities with different demographic to lead
Avoid certain group of effected people and minorities from getting lower

AA leads to some ISSUES that are
AA itself is self-bias
AA is showing a preference for selecting and/or promoting members of a
demographic that has a history of discrimination
Unfair to non-discrimination parties
Violate the rights of the majority as AA required to hire more of the minorities
and reduce them even though the minorities might have lower competency.
Perception that might inherent in the minorities
can only be success with AA
AA is unnecessary
A society cannot be truly colour-blind until they stop making decision based
on colour(races)

Partially support AA, as

Kantian Theory : 2nd maxim, put yourself in the shoes of those being
Utilitarian Theory : Increase efficiency in workplace, provide greatest benefits to
Moral Rights : Everyone should be treated equally
E.g : The percent of black males in government contract labour increased from
5.8 percent to 6.7 percent between 1974 and 1980, compared with an increase of
5.3 to 5.9 percent in non-contractor industries, according to Jonathan Leonard in
the Journal of Economic Perspectives

On the other side, AA should be carried out in a way that benefits all include the
non discriminate parties.

2(a) Human beings are sexual creatures, and
when men and women work together, there may
be sexual overtones to their interactions. They
are naturally sexually attracted to one another.
Laws and codes governing sexual harassment
are ridiculous and put employers into
unnecessarily litigious situations. As such these
should be abolished. Discuss.
Definition of sexual harassment:
Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favours and other
verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature
Sexual attention imposed on someone who is not in a position to
refuse it

2 types of sexual harassment:
Quid pro quo
Hostile work environment
Quid pro quo means giving something in return for something else.
Occurs when a supervisor makes and employees employment
opportunities conditional on the employees entering into a sexual
relationship with, or granting sexual favours to, the supervisor.

Im gonna make her an offer she cant refuse Quoted in The Godfather.

A sexual threat as it violates the rights of the person being threatened.
Lead to a damaging and psychologically state of mind

Hostile work environment is a behaviour of a sexual nature that is distressing
to women and interferes with their ability to perform on the job.
Sexually implicit emails, leering at or ogling a women, sexist remarks about
womens bodies
I agree that there may be sexual overtones in our interactions:

But when do we know we have gone overboard?
Ones interpretation towards a statement and be different to another

However, to consider an act to be sexual harassment, it has to be persistent
in nature.

I do not agree that law and codes should be abolished:
To protect woman from being sexually harassed due to inequivalent power
between employer and employee.
Without laws, there would be ignorance. Women will be sexually harrrased
everyday and eventually, lead to mental breakdown.
However, we should not depend on laws for protection because:

Prevention is better than cure

Women should dress in a respectful manner that would not provoke
the sexual desires within men.
Tell colleague that she is uncomfortable in this situation and should
not be continued.
If persist, report to high management.
Last resort will be seeking legal advice if all else fail.
2b. Are employees consented to sexual
conduct on the part of the employer?
No because employees are only obligated to provide his or her best
knowledge and skill to work. There are laws governing sexual harassment
which is under the Employment Act.

Employers responsibilities:
Provide safe working environment and to take reasonable care of
employees well being.
Enforce the Code of Practice on the Prevention and Eradication of Sexual
Harassment in Workplace to prevent sexual harassment and to provide for
procedures for investigation and punishment of sexual harassment.
Q3 : Show why racial discrimination is
immoral by means of the utilitarian, the
Kantian and Rawslian approaches

Approaches If theres racial discrimination
the happiness of the greatest number of people in
the society is considered the greatest good.
1. Society will not live in peace
2. Discrimination will past on and forever
maxim Do unto others like you want others to
do unto you
1. No one would like to be discriminate
2. Sympathy

Principle: Liberty
Principle : Justice over Efficiency and Welfare
1. Minorities are not treated equally
2. Workplace efficiency cannot be raise, as well as
social welfeare

Q4: It is Johnson Controls policy that women
who are pregnant or who are capable of bearing
children will not be placed into jobs involving lead
exposures or which could expose them to lead
through the exercise of job bidding, bumping,
transfer or promotional rights (Beauchamp et al.
2009). Assess the moral arguments raised by such
a policy.

Core Issues
Is the policy fair?
Is the company looking seriously on safety issues and occupational
health in the workplace?
Is it necessary to create a policy for employers to always inform
employees about any dangerous or harmful activities? Under the
common workers rights, nowadays companies must provide a safe
workplace, the options stands on employees, they have the moral
rights to refuse performing a dangerous job.
Women workforce increases, can women be excluded out from
certain jobs or jobs that affect their reproductive abilities, without
justifying for themselves?
The problems is whether the company can limit the exposure to the
dangerous workplace. To prevent from the hazards that will damage
your reproductive system.

Sexual Discrimination
Because of women workforce increased. Women workers are now more
being exposed to the harmful workplace. Lead may affect a pregnant
womens blood stream and damage the brain of the child. Mother may also
suffer from skin diseases and cancer.
Because of the risks, some women request the right to switch or transfer
jobs to prevent themselves from the reproductive risks.
-Elsie Nason, experienced a wage decrease when she transferred out of a
job in which she was exposed to lead
Men suffer the same thing.
-Donald Penney filed a lawsuit against the company fetal-protection policy,
as he was denied a leave of absence so that he could lower his lead level
because he intended to become a father.
Sexual Discrimination
However, the company did not show equal concern for the
reproductive risks of men. This showed the illegal sexual
discrimination because employers exclude pregnant women and
women who are capable of bearing children from the same job
because of reproductive risks.
The reproductive hazard happens when either of the parents
are exposed to the lead. For Kantian grounds, no one would be
willing to be discriminated against on the basis of gender.
The fetal-protection policies should apply to both sexes.

Moral Rights
Johnson has the obligation and responsibility not to inflict harm.
Employees (Male and female) must be given equal employees/workers rights
such as employer must provide a safe workplace for you to work in, and will not
discriminate against you. They must be given a choice.
To have a safe workplace, employees should be given information about the
likelihood of danger which being exposed to the harm.
Foster, being bared because she wants to work in a assembly line which has high
lead exposure. Even though Foster says she has no intention to become pregnant,
the company strictly requests a medical documentation to show that she is sterile
The policy also offered women a choice of becoming sterile or losing their jobs.
Moral rights shall be hold by both gender, its their choice to accept the risks
without fear in order to keep their job no matter female or male, if Foster has no
intention to become pregnant, Foster should be hired..