In an ideal world, people would be equal in rights, opportunities, and responsibilities, despite their race or gender. In the world we live in, however, we constantly face all kinds of neglect based on different attributes. All over the world, certain people treat others with prejudice because of particular features they possess. Unfortunately, this happens even in places which, by definition, should be free of all personal prejudices—specifically, in offices and other business surroundings. This phenomenon is called workplace discrimination; not every unfair behavior at work, however, can be assessed as discrimination.
What exactly is workplace discrimination? It can be defined as a less favorable treatment towards an individual or a group of individuals at work, usually based on their nationality, skin color, sex, marital status, age, trade union activity, or other defining attributes (Australian Human Rights Commission). It can appear as a denial of certain rights, negligent treatment, intentional underestimating of a worker’s personality or work results and achievements, and so on. A person can be discriminated by their employers, or by their coworkers as well. Discrimination can result into severe psychological consequences for the victim, such as emotional stress and anxiety. Discrimination often causes an employee to leave the workplace, resign from a position, or in severe cases, to commit suicide, or act violently against the discriminators.
Workplace discrimination can take more open and threatening forms, which are known as workplace harassment. It occurs when an employee is made to feel intimidated, insulted, or humiliated, based on such features as race, ethnic origin, gender, physical or mental disability, or on any other characteristic specified under legislation (AHRC). The two most radical forms of workplace harassment are the application of physical violence or sexual harassment—women are especially exposed to this kind of discrimination. Workplace violence can take several forms: the direct exercise of physical force against a worker which causes or could cause injuries to the worker; an attempt to exercise physical force; or a statement or behavior which a worker can reasonably interpret as a threat to exercise physical force (Ontario Ministry of Labor). Sexual harassment can take the form of obscene jokes and allusions; intrusive body contact; inappropriate gestures, or even direct actions aimed at sexual contact.
There are several ways to deal with workplace discrimination; such measures can be held both on the individual and on the collective level. Individuals who have experienced discrimination or harassment at work are recommended to stand firm under verbal attacks, remain confident about their own abilities and judgments, and try not to stay alone with the abusive person (UnionSafe). At the same time, collective measures can be taken as well. They usually include calling for a meeting in a quiet, confidential place in order to admit and discuss the problem; complaining to competent authorities; developing respective policies together with sanctions applied in case there is an infringement enacted by workers.
Unfortunately, we do not live in a perfect world, and not all people can enjoy equal opportunities and rights. This refers not only to our personal lives, but to our working environment as well; employees can be discriminated and abused because of certain features they possess, such as the color of skin, their ethnicity or gender, age, marital status, disabilities, and so on. To eliminate workplace discrimination, both individual and collective preventive measures should be made.
“What is Workplace Discrimination and Harassment?” Australian Human Rights Commission. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 July 2013. <http://www.humanrights.gov.au/what-workplace-discrimination-and-harassment>.
“Preventing Workplace Violence and Workplace Harassment.” Ontario Ministry of Labor. N.p., July 2011. Web. 05 July 2013. <http://www.labour.gov.on.ca/english/hs/sawo/pubs/fs_workplaceviolence.php>.
“Bullying and Harassment in the Workplace.” UnionSafe. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 July 2013. <http://unionsafe.labor.net.au/hazards/10717236108849.html>.
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Writing a Definition Essay
Accidents and mishaps are unforeseen circumstances that can affect individuals and groups at any time and in any place. Most accidents are preventable, but the carelessness or negligence of the involved individuals leads to major injuries and grievances. Accidents can also occur in the workplace and seriously affect the ability and health of the involved workers.
The objectives of this essay to discuss the safety and wellbeing of all workers are necessary for the organization not only for consistent productivity but also due to regulatory requirements. Workers and human resources are the necessary components of all organizations due to their role in the effective accomplishment of objectives. Corporations cannot achieve long-term success and sustainable growth in the absence of motivated, safe, healthy, and effective workers. The health and safety of all workers are necessary to ensure the enhancement of productivity and efficiency at all levels and areas. Lack of safety measures can create havoc for the organization and negatively affect the working criterion of an organization. The management has to devise and implement effective safety procedures to reduce hazards and prevent accidents in the workplace. The can motivate the employees through this perspective as employees admire working in organizations that prefer safe working conditions. Employees believe that safer working conditions enhance their ability work because they do not feel scared in troublesome situations. The management should coordinate with all the related stakeholders when they devise policies about safety at workplace, as this would enhance a positive change in an organization. Different legislations also depict that organizations should focus on these perspectives and they should attain self-sufficiency in providing workplace safety.
Corporations in the current era focus on the development of employees and they believed in the ideology of benefiting employees through different approaches. Safety at the work force is an important aspect that many organizations of today’s world disregard. Many people face mishaps and accidents in various situations especially due to negligence, recklessness, and carelessness. Many accidents and serious injuries are avoidable and preventable by taking effective safety measures and reducing hazards. For example, drivers and passengers can avoid serious injuries and death by wearing seatbelts while traveling in cars. However, many people fail to realize the importance of seatbelts and face a variety of consequences in the event of an accident. Mishaps and accidents are unforeseen occurrences that can lead to several adverse consequences in the absence of effective safety measures and precautions. Accidents, disasters, and mishaps can also occur in the workplace and affect several employees in the absence of precautions and safety procedures. Certain mediocre organizations do not regard this aspect as important and they do not focus on safety at the workplace. The owners and management of the organization need to implement rules, regulations, procedures, and systems relevant to safety and health. The management also needs to ensure that all workers have ample knowledge and information regarding safety procedures, prevention of accidents, and safe working practices.
Human resources are one of the most important assets of the organization with respect to success and growth. The success and growth of the organization depend on the effectiveness and efficiency of the human resources. However, the inefficiencies in human resources caused by any circumstances, occurrences, and events can hinder the accomplishments of the organization. Organizations take all necessary measures to ensure the productivity of all workers and employees to maximize profits and achieve organizational objectives (Blair, 2013). The wellbeing, safety, and health of all employees are among the highest priorities of all organizations. Organizations cannot take risk for their respective employees because an occurrence of a negative event would tarnish the credibility of an organization. Safe and healthy workers are more productive as compared to injured or sick employees. Employees that cannot work in safe conditions feel suffocated because of the risks associated with their respective work. Risks and hazards associated with a specific job or organization adversely affect the morale and motivation level of employees. The unsafe or hazardous working conditions have several long-term psychological and physiological consequences for the workers and the organizations. When a negative event occurs in an organization, it sets up the mindset of an employee. Employees would feel that this event would occur again and this would create hurdles in their effective working process. Organizations need to create a safe and healthy working environment for all workers to ensure high levels of motivation and enhancement in efficiency (Stricoff & Groover, 2012).
Safety at Workplace
Workplace safety refers to the prevention of illness, injury, and hazards in the workplace for all employees. Workplace safety involves the creation of a safe and healthy environment for all workers to evade hazards, injuries, and illnesses. Organizations can ensure the efficiency of all workers and circumvent a considerable amount of costs by ensuring workplace safety and health. Organizations develop different strategies through which they set up different work place safety policies and benefit the workers through this. Workplace injuries and illnesses lead to compensation benefits, health insurance costs, hiring temporary replacements, lost work hours, and lawsuits. Lack of concentration would cost severe damage to an organization and they should sort such issues in order to attain proactive benefits. Business can save a considerable amount of costs by creating and maintaining a safe and healthy environment for all workers. Safeguarding the interests and wellbeing of the employees allows organizations to circumvent costs relevant to injuries and illnesses (Legg, Laird, Olsen, & Hasle, 2014). On the other hand, workplace safety instills a sense of commitment and dedication among the employees due to the safety assurance of the organization. The morale and motivation of the workers increase due to the implementation of rules that safeguard the health and interest of the employees. Employees feel that they are safe to work in this place, and through this perspective, they would perform well.
Purpose of Workplace safety
The primary objective of safety in the workplace is to create a safe, healthy, and risk-free environment for all workers. Workplace safety involves the evaluation, analysis, prevention, and elimination of hazardous and dangerous elements from the workplace. Workplace safety programs evaluate and remove the risks and hazards relevant to the safety, well-being, and health of workers and other relevant individuals. Organizations develop health and safety standards due to several reasons including laws, regulatory requirements, organizational policies, and historical occurrences. Certain industries and their associations bind organizations to work for the benefit of their employees and they force organizations to focus on different safety related perspectives. Workplace injuries and illnesses caused by working conditions or environment can lead to lawsuits, high costs, and deterioration of the corporate image. There are instances when employees at times die because of sever working conditions. Employees might got injured because of certain safety and the lack of safety would be the only probable reason of this. Enhanced safety measures and appropriate quality of these measures can reduce this perspective to a considerable level.
Safety at the workplace enables organizations to comply with regulatory requirements and prevent high costs resulting from injuries and illnesses. Several corporations can consider the fact that these safety measures would save their health and medicinal costs that would arise when an employees would hurt him. They should take proactive measures earlier through which people can benefit from these perspectives. The management can maintain high levels of productivity and efficiency by creating a safe and healthy working environment. Conversely, the employees work with dedication due to their perceptions regarding the commitment of the organization with respect to the wellbeing of the workers.
Importance of safety at workplace
Legislative and legal requirements are the most prominent cause of health and safety policies in most organizations. The Occupational and Safety Health Act is the primary law for the assurance of health and safety of all workers throughout the United States. The Occupational and Safety Health Act (OSHA) necessitates the dissemination of standards, rules, and regulations relevant to the safety and health of workers. The government establishes and enforces the standards for the safety and health of all workers and their families through the Act. All public and private organizations have to comply with the rules, regulations, and standards prescribed in OSHA (Jung & Makowsky, 2014). They would face legal complications if they do not comply with such policies and measures taken by the decision makers. However, many organizations develop and implement health and safety procedures to safeguard their interests relevant to organizational objectives rather than legal requirements. The financial and moral aspects of workers’ health and safety have a greater influence as compared to regulatory compliance. Corporations can save considerable costs by avoiding high insurance expenses, lawsuits, and employee replacement costs in the event of injuries and illnesses (Barling & Frone, 2003).
Manpower and Management
The primary objective of all managers is to enhance and promote productivity and efficiency in all areas and functions. However, the managers cannot uphold efficiency and effectiveness in the absence of a safe workplace. The managers need to create a safe working environment and increase the awareness and knowledge of all employees with respect to safe working practices. The employees and workers also need to understand the importance of workplace safety and reduce personal injury through attentiveness and removal of hazards. These safety hazards are negative for the effectiveness of organizations and create a long-term negative impact. The attitude of the employees, management, and employers plays a vital role in preventing accidents and creating a safe working environment. The negligence on the part of the employers and employees can cause a variety of hazards and accidents (Rahim, Ng, Biggs, & Boots, 2014). However, the diligence and commitment of all stakeholders regarding safe work practices leads to the prevention of major accidents and injuries. The employees and management can create a safe workplace through a shared responsibility model for workplace safety and cooperation. Organizations should own this perspective and they should realize the fact that it is their managerial responsibility to focus on this perspective so that employees can remain safe.
Conclusively, a safety plan is necessary and it comprises of certain steps that would develop a safer workplace. Organizations should make sure that everyone else in the workplace is aware of the core problem. People should notify their respective supervisors and they should file any reports if there is a problem. An important aspect is that people should realize that there is a problem as sitting back and holding the problem for a long time would not solve the problem.
Barling, J., & Frone, M. (2003). The Psychology of Workplace Safety. New Jersey: Amer Psychological Assn.
Blair, E. H. (2013). Building safety culture. Professional Safety , 58 (11), 59-65.
Cobb, E. (2013). Bullying, Violence, Harassment, Discrimination and Stress: Emerging Workplace Health and Safety Issues. New Jersey: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform.
Jung, J., & Makowsky, M. D. (2014). The determinants of federal and state enforcement of workplace safety regulations: OSHA inspections 1990’2010. Journal of Regulatory Economics , 45 (1), 1-33.
Legg, S., Laird, I., Olsen, K., & Hasle, P. (2014). Creating healthy work in small enterprises – from understanding to action: Summary of current knowledge. Small Enterprise Research , 21 (2), 139-147.
Mathis, T., & Galloway, S. (2013). Steps to Safety Culture Excellence. New Jersey: Wiley.
Rahim, A. N., Ng, H. K., Biggs, D., & Boots, K. (2014). Perceptions of safety, physical working conditions and stress between Malaysia and United Kingdom. International Journal of Business & Society , 15 (2), 321-338.
Stricoff, R., & Groover, D. (2012). The Manager’s Guide to Workplace Safety. New York : Safety in Action Press.