Workplace ethics are standards or codes that determines right and wrong moral behavior in the work environment. Discrimination is defined as “the unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or things, especially on the grounds of race, age, or sex.” (Oxford Dictionary) Workplace discrimination deals with issues such as religion, race, gender, disability, age, and sexual orientation. Covering all of these issues is beyond the scope of this paper, therefore, I will focus on age, gender, and race. Positive workplace ethics should be a part of every company. Employers are required by laws to ensure that employees are treated fairly in the workplace and not discriminated in the workplace.
“One hundred years after the Civil War, President John F. Kennedy called on Americans to fulfill the nation's promise of equal rights and equal opportunities.” This was the first major legislation dealing with civil rights. Prior to this, he Unemployment Relief Act of 1933 stated,” t]hat in employing citizens for the purpose of this Act no discrimination shall be made on account of race, color, or creed. This was the Civil Rights Act of 1964 pertaining to employment practices. (EEOC) The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is responsible for enforcing federal laws that make it illegal to discriminate against a job applicant or an employee because of the person's race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information. It is also illegal to discriminate against a person because the person complained about discrimination, filed a charge of discrimination, or participated in an employment discrimination investigation or lawsuit.” (EEOC.Gov)
“Discrimination against middle-aged and older workers has long been a common practice of American business firms.” (Gregory, attorney 2001) Employers often think an older worker may not be able to perform to his/her full capacity. These perceived notions are sometimes related to the age and not the individual’s own ability. Therefore, they are forced to early retirement or reduced schedules. “Morally, it has been argued, the longer a worker remains with an employer, the greater the loyalty owed to that works by the employer. Under the law, however, the employers are not bound to any such commitment. Rather, the employment-at-will doctrine allows the employer to fire an employee regardless of the length of service without violating the law.” (Gregory 2001)
Sex discrimination occurs when someone is treated unfairly in the workplace because of gender. It can occur when it related to hiring, unfair pay based gender, unfair promotions and sexual harassment. ( John M. Grohol, Psy.D) Another form of sex discrimination is sexual harassment. The term “quid pro quo” harassment is when unfavorable action is taken when a supervisor makes advancement to an employee and the employee does not act on. (Crosby,et al, ( Wetchler)