HR Management; Laws against a Discrimination Scenario
Question 1. Identify and describe the specific issues Maalick encountered in the workplace. Do the actions of other workers at Treton represent discrimination and harassment? What elements of law are important for Treton to consider?
In the scenario case, Maalick was exposed to racial and ethical prejudice. According to Allen, Williams, and Allen (2018), derogatory acts founded on an individual’s race (skin color), nationality, location background, nationality or traditions are considered ethnic prejudice. From the aforementioned assumption, it is evident that the plaintiff was a victim of ethnic prejudice from his fellow employees who had a restricted knowledge of his religion. Treton Communications Inc. policies on diversity should protect any minority group as stipulated by Title VII of the Civil Rights. Therefore, the decoration of Maalick’s workstation with dolls and pins sticking out from various body parts, witch hats, containers of incense, as well as other voodoo items, went against these policies and thus constituted harassment. His colleagues identified him as a social misfit and compared his religious beliefs to witchcraft, which was an apparent display of their prejudicial view against him. Maalick’s coworkers had earlier indicated their concerns over his religion and they felt that his assertions to deity went against their social norms, a factor he was keen to address after reporting to the station from his vacation. Subsequently, this was the reason for their actions; however, there was no justification for such action. Additionally, the “Prayers for Black Folk” paper notes placed next to the book titled Mystical Practices from the Negro Experience, was an indication of racial prejudice. It is for this reason that he notified the HR department of the workplace issues he had been subjected to.
When dealing with issues of racial prejudice in the workplace, two forms of cases exist. One case involves a solid evidence of actions against race such as that aforementioned and another, which may contain substantial evidence. On Maalick’s behalf, it can be debated that due to his qualifications he was best candidate for the promotion. However, because of the racial prejudice laid against him, a co-worker with lesser qualifications was awarded the position. The HR departments, as well as Mr. Jenkins, will be required to present arguments that articulate the reasons why the plaintiff was overlooked for the promotion.
Question 2. Evaluate the actions of the HR director, Marta Ford, in response to Maalick’s situation. What could she have done to prevent the situation and what more could she do to ensure that this type of situation would not occur in the future?
The Human Resources department is expected to oversee and enforce all employee diversity policies in any organization while maintaining professionalism. After the HR manager, Marta Ford had received Maalick’s formal complaints; she conducted herself in a professional manner. First, she handled the case respectfully unlike Mr. Jenkins who downplayed incident in lighthearted ribbing. The plaintiff’s situation worsened not because the HR manager failed to handle the matter seriously, but because Maalick’s immediate head Mr. Jenkins went against his protocol to promote what was clearly a violation of Maalick’s rights. Additionally, her inquest was immediate because she asked the plaintiff of any knowledge regarding specific individuals that may have been responsible for the actions taken against him.
Secondly, Mrs. Ford’s actions to call for a meeting with all department heads to inform them about the situation shortly after holding inquiries with the plaintiff highlighted commendable leadership skills. She was able to control the situation from an administrative level thus preventing any form of repeated or future managerial lackluster behavior. She later sent an e-mail to all facility employees, reminding them of Treton’s policies regarding discrimination and harassment and the penalties associated with such actions. The action made sure that she had control of the situation on a subordinate level thus protecting the organization from legal action. As an added measure, she made sure that by the end of the day Maalick presented his complaints, and that all department heads including Mr. Jenkins met the specific employees suspected of discriminatory actions. These individuals were served with warnings to desist from such behavior. This action was a form of guarantee for the victims that the issues of discrimination were being addressed in a variety of levels as well as by the staff members. Nonetheless, despite the swift action, Mrs. Ford ought to have conducted regular staff profile analyses earlier to gain deeper understanding of the issues In order to prevent such cases, she should schedule regular and random employee profiles analysis.
Question 3. How would you characterize Clive Jenkins’ behavior and response to this situation?
Mr. Jenkins’ reaction to the plaintiff’s situation identified a lack of professionalism. It should be understood that the US constitution, through Title VII of the Civil Rights, recognizes the differentiation in race, age ethnicity, as well as religious background and only as a prescience to not only accept such rights but also to respect them. Mr. Jenkins was the first to state that Maalick’s situation was not only different, but also strange. There is a clear difference between the two words, with strange highlighting a negative connotation to the difference between what an individual does and what is considered natural. Additionally, after the plaintiff brought complaints of discrimination at the workplace, Mr. Jenkins was quick to underplay the situation stating it was a joke, which Maalick ought to have expected due to his African origin. When he realized that Maalick was agitated by what was happening, Mr. Jenkins stated that as the department head he would handle the situation, but failed to do so.
Question 4. What resolution to this situation might Judith Dixon suggest?
As the vice president for EEO and diversity, Judith Dixon is expected to take the case up as an incidence of racial and ethnic discrimination. It is evident that the plaintiff was a subject of unfair actions in the workplace, and it is important to find out if such actions led to more prejudicial actions such as being overlooked for a promotional position. She ought to understand the root cause of the bias in order to mitigate the issue. Additionally, she should access all promotion issues that may be related to Maalick’s case in order to understand the employee profiles in regards to her department. As an additional measure, Judith Dixon, will be expected to develop new organizational diversity policies that would aid regional offices that may not have an equal share between the majority and minority groups such as the in Chenworth.
Question 5. What are the broader implications of this situation for Treton? What type of organizational review might Dixon initiate or suggest from a corporate perspective?
Similar to any company Treton should act in a manner that would encourage equality; however, in such cases, prejudice may be complex to identify unless it is clearly proved by clear actions or a declaration. Therefore, in order to protect minorities, there is a need to conduct organizational wide employee diversity and ethnicity analysis in order to make sure such issues may not be repeated. However, the primary change expected in the organization is the shift in minority employee ratio as compared to their counterparts. A smaller group of workers will always conduct themselves as marginalized not according to prejudices against them but because what is considered norm and performed by the majority will always contradict their own right placing them in a psychological bottleneck (Landy & Conte, 2016).
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