It is known that any company or firm which operates on the territory of the United States should comply with the U.S employment laws and regulations. The U.S. Labor Department is a special agency that not only maintains statistical data concerning unemployment, wages, working hour standards, different employment services and some economic statistics, but also this agency provides information concerning the major employment-related laws and regulations and compliance (U.S. Department of Labor, Official Site, 2012). In our case study, a new boss of the firm is interested in the firm’s compliance with the U.S. employment-related laws and regulations. That is why the white paper will define the most important harassment and employment-related laws and regulations.
DEFINITION OF THE MOST IMPORTANT HARASSMENT AND EMPLOYMENT-RELATED LAWS AND REGULATIONS
One of the most important employment-related laws and regulations is the Fair Labor Standards Act, or FLSA. According to this Act, any organization in the USA should comply with the main points of this act which set basic minimum wage as well as overtime pay and child labor standards. This act requires employers to pay at least the federal minimum wage and overtime pay to all employees (U.S. Department of Labor, Official Site, 2012).
The other important employment-related act is Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which is considered to be one of the major civil rights laws and regulations that influence the processes of recruitment, hiring and other important areas of employment. This act ensures equal protection of all employees against discrimination actions based on race, color, gender and age (Cross, 2011, para.2).
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 protects the job candidates who are more than 40 years old against discrimination during the hiring process. Besides, according to this act, the employers have no right to pay their older employees less than younger employees because of their age. Moreover, they have no right to force older employees to retire before age 65, in some cases before age 60 (Cross, 2011, para.3).
The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, or ADA, is one of the most important employment-related acts for people with disabilities. Title I of this act forbids discrimination practices against employees with disabilities including hiring, promotion, workers’ compensation, job training, working conditions and privileges (DeLeire, 2000, p.698).
The National Labor Relations Act of 1935 protects the rights of employees and employers and encourages collective bargaining (National Labor Relations Board, Official Site, 2012). In this case, the law protects the right of employees to join labor unions and to bargain on different employment-related issues including wages, working conditions and working hours.
On more important employment-related act is the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 which prohibits employers to hire employees who are unauthorized to work in the USA. Moreover, this act guarantees protection to authorized employees against discrimination based on national issues and citizenship status (Cross, 2011, para.6).
The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, or OSHA, is another important document the major goal of which is to provide healthy and safe working conditions for all employees. It encourages employers to reduce hazards in the workplace and to implement effective safety and health programs (The U.S. Department of Labor, Official Site, 2012).
Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, or GINA, is one more act which prohibits discrimination in the workplace against employees because of their genetic information. According to this act, the employers are not allowed to seek and use the genetic information of their employees in their own purposes. It is known that all genetic information is limited for the employers (National Human Genome Research Institute, Official Site, 2012).
THE MAJOR POINTS THAT WILL BE INCLUDED IN THE FIRM’S HARASSMENT POLICY
It is known that the firm’s harassment policy has the major goal – to prevent different types of harassment in the workplace. Moreover, the effective harassment policy will help to improve the employees’ morale, to avoid many legal problems, and to escape poor reputation of the firm in the labor market (Sample, 2007, p.19). As harassment in the workplace is focused on the unwanted verbal or physical behavior of one person towards another which humiliates and offends him, harassment policy should include different categories of behavior, such as discriminatory behavior, personal harassment, sexual harassment, bullying, abuse of authority, poisoned work environment, disability harassment and psychological harassment (Zaheer, 2011, p.1). Discriminatory behavior occurs when employees in the workplace are treated unequally because of one or several types of discrimination, including race, color, age, origin, sexual orientation, and so on. Personal harassment is related to personal harassment which leads to personal discrimination. This type of harassment is focused on some offensive comments and objectionable conduct. Sexual harassment refers to the employees’ behavior of sexual nature which includes different comments and gestures that cause humiliation and offense. For example, sexual harassment in the workplace includes not only sexual assault, but also patting, touching, leering, comments about sexual life, sexual jokes and so on. Bullying refers to behavior that attacks employees by unjustified criticism, for example setting unrealistic plans, or increasing responsibility and work load (Zaheer, 2011, p.1).
Besides the information concerning different types of harassment in the workplace, the firm’s harassment policy should include wage and salary legislation and employment laws and regulations which have already been mentioned above.
DISCUSSION OF THE POLICY IMPLICATIONS FOR THE COMPANY’S GLOBAL WORKPLACE
The policy implications for the company’s global workplace are based on diversity in the workplace (Sample, 2007, p.20). As the firm has both international and American employees, some team members may have different attitude to harassment, different understanding of jokes and critical comments. That is why it is necessary to explain them their rights in the workplace and to conduct feedback surveys or tests which will help to improve working environment (Sample, 2007, p.26).
In conclusion, it is necessary to say that different types of harassment in the workplace create negative working environment and reduce employees’ productivity and motivation to perform their duties in a proper way. Harassment policy helps to solve many problems and provides overview of the major employment-related laws and regulations.
DeLeire, T. (2000). The Wage and Employment Effects of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Journal of Human Resources, Vol. 35(4)
Cross, V. (2011). Types of Employment Laws. Ehow.com. April 6, 2011. Retrieved from:< http://www.ehow.com/info_8173477_types-employment-laws.html>
National Labor Relations Board. Official Site. (2012). National Labor Relations Act. Retrieved from:< https://www.nlrb.gov/national-labor-relations-act>
National Human Genome Research Institute. Official Site. (2012). Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008. Retrieved from:<http://www.genome.gov/24519851>
Sample, J. (2007). The Compelling Argument for Harassment Prevention Training: Implications. Performance Improvement. Vol.46(7).
U.S. Department of Labor. Official Site. (2012). Retrieved from:<http://www.dol.gov/>
Zaheer, O. (2011) Types of Harassment. Types of everything.com. March 21, 2011. Retrieved from:< http://www.typesofeverything.com/types-of-harassment/>