Healthcare and Medicine Reference
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Diversity is an important element of business strategy in order to sup-
port innovation, creativity, and effective problem-solving. Blank and Slipp
(1994) suggested that homogeneous workplaces have been found to be
less adept at innovating than heterogeneous ones. When employees do
not represent a variety of backgrounds they provide businesses with fewer
opportunities to appeal to an increasingly diverse consumer market.
Employees who work in an unfair or negative environment are not always
able to focus their optimum effort in performing their responsibilities. In
today's economy, government bodies at all levels should enact necessary
policy reforms to help businesses revise harmful management practices in
the workplace.
It was mentioned earlier that workplace discrimination increases when
employers feel threatened by economic downturns. In good economic
times, employers realize that they are supposed to support diversity and
would be inclined to hire a minority candidate to get affirmative action
credits. But when times are hard, decision makers in organizations will
often look out for their preferred group and cut off workers considered as
outsiders. Although an employer's discriminatory behavior may often
appear justified by business economics, it is toxic for profit margins.
When companies elect to downsize, minorities and women are often the
least experienced workers with less tenure and will usually be dismissed
first. Paula Brantner, executive director of Workplace Fairness, noted that,
when times are good, workers can more easily replace the income and
benefits they have lost. In good times, if employees experience a negative
or discriminatory workplace environment,
they might
leave with the
prospect of soon getting another job ( Walker, 2010 ).
The local Cleveland EEOC settled a $400,000 race discrimination and
retaliation class settlement case against Mineral Met Inc., a division of the
Chemalloy Company and cited the following claims.
￿ Black employees were disciplined for having facial hair while white
employees were not.
￿ A white supervisor at that company placed a hangman's noose on a
piece of machinery.
In another harmful management practice example, The EEOC sued
DHL Express (USA) Inc., alleging the following.
￿ DHL discriminated against black Chicago-area employees by giving
them worse assignments than their white counterparts.
￿ DHL assigned more-difficult and dangerous work to black employees
than to white employees, violating federal civil rights laws.
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