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Ban On Employing Smokers Is Unjust And The Start Down A Dangerous Path

1216 words - 5 pages

Losee 5Thomas LoseeKaty CraneIntroduction to Academic Writing7 April 2012Ban on Employing Smokers is Unjust and the Start Down a Dangerous PathThere is a current trend in the USA for companies to ban hiring of tobacco users. Smoking is a personal life choice and therefore should not be a basis for employment credentials. If we allow one personal choice to be used against us in such manner, where does the line get drawn? Will companies be allowed to discriminate against fat people? Will they be allowed to discriminate based on the types of music a person listens to, I mean, if you listen to rap, you have violent tendencies and therefore are a greater risk of an assault case right? What about discriminating against someone that enjoys the outdoors, they could get a tan, and tans lead to skin cancer which in turn leads to higher insurance. There is to much no man's land and a loss of to much individual freedom if we allow companies to base hiring policies on individual life decisions. The only possible solution is to close this Pandora's Box for good and introduce legislation protecting an individual's right to make personal lifestyle decisions without fear of affecting their employment status."Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination in hiring, promotion, discharge, pay, fringe benefits, job training, classification, referral, and other aspects of employment, on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin. This law is enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)." (United States Department of Labor)No fair and just minded individual can argue with this law. It makes perfect sense. An employee is hired for the work they do, and the value of that work. This law has been expanded so that it stops discrimination against age, pregnancy, disability and genetic information as well. (U.S. Equal Employment Oppertunity Commision)The law however has not yet been expanded to protect employees right to have his or hers non-work related personal lifestyle decisions from effecting their employment. This fact is extremely evident in the new trend of employers refusing to hire smokers. A trend encouraged by popular business periodical Forbes magazine. In an article of 10 ways small businesses can save on healthcare number 4 was to not hire smokers or charge them more for their health insurance. The article also hinted at increasing rates for those employees that have a higher Body Mass Index, aka, fat people, more on that later though. (Lynch)The war on smokers is nothing new. There have been growing tobacco free zones and higher taxes on tobacco for the last three decades. Even the ban on hiring smokers, and this isn't limited to just the small businesses, have been around since the 1980's. One of largest companies, and first to ban the hiring of smokers is Alaska Airlines. (Peters)This fight is coming into our backdoor as well. The UA is currently looking into a ban on the hiring of smokers. There are...

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