Ethical Situation of Age Discrimination
Ethical Case #1
This case clearly represents the unethical act of age discrimination. Not only is this an ethical issue, but if Bob could prove he was being harassed or targeted because of his age, he may be able to file a lawsuit against his company. In any workplace, if employees are performing their job up to the required standard, then age should not become a factor. There is no reason Bob should have his work scrutinized more than anyone else in the company, unless his work is sub-par but referencing the case description, this does not seem to be the case. This type of discrimination is somewhat different than other forms because it can affect each and every one of us and can affect people at a time in their lives when they are most vulnerable. From an ethical perspective it is an unfair practice; heartless; and lacking in empathy. In business, as in life in general, we all must follow the rule of “treat others the way we want to be treated.” If everyone were to act this way, ethical issues would not come into play as often.
Probability and Extent of Possible Physical, Mental, or Emotional Damage:
I think all three of these damage factors could potentially come into play with this case. Bob can see how he is being treated differently than the rest of the staff and knows it’s because of his age. Because of this, I’m sure he ends up giving more effort than others in order for him to meet the approval of his manager who I’m assuming is much younger than him and feels superior because of this. Not only could this potentially damage his body physically, but mentally and emotionally as well and can result in lowering his self esteem and possibly depression. I’m sure he has a lot of stress built up from his feelings towards his managers, and the fact that he is probably worrying about his work being reviewed constantly.
Probability and Extent of Economic Harm:
The loss of productivity due to organizations forcing older employees to retire could potentially be an economic harm for a company. They may be forced to leave even though they still have plenty of knowledge and experience in the workplace and will probably be replaced by younger and inexperienced employees. Because of this replacement, the quantity and quality of work could potentially be lower. Also, laying off older employees too early can decrease their spending habits and lower their consumption, which would result in less tax income earned by the state and less revenue earned by individual businesses.
Another potential scenario of economic harm which this case could present would be if Bob were to file a lawsuit against the company claiming he was being mistreated because of his age. If this were to happen then the company could face a large settlement in addition to bad public relations with