I have attached 2 different discussions please read and respond. Please do not put the discussions together.
One of the most crucial issues nowadays for all business is the one about health and safety in the workplace. According to the regulations stipulated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), employees have a right to safe working conditions but with the Coronavirus going around, how much can an organization do to keep its employees safe?
Its true that employers have obligations to accommodate employees, however its not yet clear that having COVID-19 or exhibiting symptoms is a covered disability under state or federal law. Employers are also obligated to provide all employees with a safe working environment. The watchword is SAFETY FIRST. Employers must inform employees that they will enforce these safety requirements even if that means keeping employees at home to contain contagions.
Employers are not required to provide telecommuting or work at home options but can certainly choose to do so under the right circumstances. Employers with policies permitting this option should follow their policies always remembering that employees safety is first.
There are positions whose duties can be performed from home, and this may enable a business to continue its operations rather than partially or fully shutting down even when most or all employees are unable to come to the workplace. Just as clearly, there are positions whose duties cannot be performed off site, and there is no requirement to create this option. In any event, employers should plan and determine which positions are in which category.
The two opposing viewpoints to this issue are: Putting in place all the safety guidelines from the CDC will keep employees safe but, what can legally be done by the employee if even after those measurements are put in place, still someone gets sick?
I based my position of fearing for my own health even though my organization has put in place all the safe measurements on the fact that, State-mandated workers compensation programs, and a separate program for federal workers, provide benefits to eligible employees who suffer job-related injuries and illnesses (these vary state by state). As a rule, where the harm arises out of and in the course of employment, employees are limited to the prescribed workers compensation benefits and cannot recover damages for pain and suffering or mental anguish. Some states allow additional awards beyond normal workers compensation awards when injury results from an employers willful or intentional act, which might include failure to provide appropriate protections.
I believe, drawing on this analysis, companies should consider under which circumstances they would want to extend or expand benefits and protections, and also be very cautious of when and how to require employees to return to work.
A whistle-blower is anyone who reports insider knowledge of illegal activities occurring in an organization. Whistle-blowers can be employees, suppliers, contractors, clients, or any individual who becomes aware of illegal business activities. Whistle blowers are protected from retaliation under various programs created by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Sarbanes Oxley Act, and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The protection of federal employees is under the Whistle blower Protection Act of 1989 (Kenton, 2020).
One of the most notable whistle-blowers is W. Mark Felt, also known as “Deep Throat,” who exposed former President Richard Nixon’s involvement in illegal dealings during the Watergate Scandal. Another famous whistleblower is Sherron Watkins, a former Enron employee, who shed light on the company’s fraudulent accounting practices. As a result, Enron ceased operations and brought about the birth of the Sarbanes Oxley Act.
Whistle-blowers are protected from retaliation should the information provided confirm to be true. This protection includes prohibiting the accused company from taking adverse or harmful actions against the reporter. Activities include demotion, termination, reprimands, and other punitive reactions. The whistle-blower protection also covers prohibitions against the company pursuing legal action against the whistle-blower to recoup losses incurred during the investigation or imposed penalties.
When it comes to the overall concept of whistle-blowing, I am a firm believer in the process. Whistle-blowing provides oversight in places where there are little to no oversight. For example, if a whistle-blower works in the car industry and exposes braking systems on cars are faulty and leadership is aware, but take no action because of the cost to fix the issue hurts profits that would be something the public should know. Exposing an issue like that could possibly save lives. Another example are whistle-blowers who report suspicions activity like money laundering. They often have inside knowledge which is vital for fighting such crimes(Marria, 2018). Reflecting on the WorldCom accounting scandal and whistle blowings role in the matter, one Fortune magazine article stated, If [Cynthia] Cooper had been a good soldier, the whole incredible mess might have been concealed forever. In simple words, had Cynthia not spoken up, the inappropriate behavior would have continued and, as a result, cause even more damage than the scandal did when it surfaced to the public.
I will admit there are a few issues about the process someone against whistle-blowering would oppose or argue. One argument could be “what gives the whistle-blower the right to report the incident or issue”. We all have different values and morals, set at different level of understanding. Another would be who made them the moral or ethical police. According to attorney Mike Bothwell, even though the whistle-blower has chosen the right thing, their coworkers may not agree with the decision and/or actions. Whistle-blowers often stand alone. Friends they thought they could trust in their workplace will turn their back on them in order to protect their own reputation. Another reason according to (Bothwell, 2020) the whistle-blowers career might suffer because of their choice. Once your case becomes public, you may receive attention in the business world. Being labeled as a whistle-blower could decrease your chances of being hired at a new company in the future.
It is important to keep in mind that everyone is entitled to there opinion. The best way to collaborate with anyone holding an alternative view is to respect ones view and to keep things in perspective. Agree to disagree. I feel if we keep this thought in mind during collaboration or dialogue will decrease the chance of conflict or a verbal argument. Agreeing to disagree means coming to an understanding with someone you disagree with. When you agree to disagree, you accept that neither of you is going to change the others mind (wonderopolis.org, 2020).
Ethics and morality go hand in hand. If you face an ethical crisis in the workplace, consider first whether real harm may be done to others if you dont do everything in your power to correct the situation. Then, commit to acting ethically. No one is obligated to take actions that might harm ones own interests. However, our moral obligation to society does obligate us to right a wrong when we see one that has occurred.
Bothwell, M. (2017, August 14). In Pros and Cons of Whistleblowing in the workplace. Retrieved from https://whistleblowerlaw.com/whistleblowing-in-the-workplace/
(Links to an external site.)
Calver, C. (2010, June 29). In The Importance of Whistle Blowing. Retrieved from https://astronsolutions.net/the-importance-of-whistle-blowing/
Kenton, W. (n.d.). What is a whistle blower. In Investopedia. Retrieved from https://www.investopedia.com/terms/w/whistleblower.asp
(Links to an external site.)
Marria, V. (2018,Nov 2). How-important-are-whistleblowers-in-detecting-crime-and-fraud, https//Forbes.com.
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