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Insulting a Disabled Patron?
Does it Get Any Worse?
HR Stories From The Front Lines*
You’ve most likely witnessed an employee’s bad behavior… hopefully not one of your own, though. But imagine hearing a restaurant cashier insulting and mistreating a deaf patron
in the middle of the lunchtime rush? Forget lunchtime. Any time. What would you do? Are you aware of the potential monetary consequences you may face if an employee fails to properly address a disabled customer?This particular PR nightmare can damage your immediate bottom line as well as your company’s long-term reputation, with legal bills being just one aspect of a public perception disaster.
Read on for the latest “terrible but true” PR Nightmare you need to learn from now.*
(*These incidents really happened; but names and other details have been changed.)
Stay Up to Date on the Latest Employment Legal Updates
Do you have an HR question keeping you up at night?
The following questions were submitted to our HR Professionals in the past month …Question #1
We have an employee whose driver’s license recently expired and she just got a new one. However, when replacing driver’s licenses, our state now first issues a temporary ID and then the new permanent license
comes in the mail a couple of weeks later. Can we accept the temporary ID for the I9?
I have an employee who has been missing a ton of time lately, including all 4 days this week so far. She sent us this email yesterday:
I just wanted to write a quick email explaining why I have been taking so many days off. Please don’t think I am trying to take advantage of anyone’s kindness. I am not deliberately missing work for no reason. I am not trying to take advantage of how easy- going the company is with its employees.
To be completely honest, my mental health is at an all time low right now. As humiliating as writing this email is, I just want to explain that I need these couple of days to get myself together. I have clinical depression and social anxiety and trying to lead a productive life while suffering from that is extremely difficult. I have started a medication for it and perhaps it’s my body getting used to it but this past week has been particularly hard for me. I just ask that you please try to be patient and understanding. I love my job and working with you guys is the best. Please believe me when I say that missing work is not something I take lightly. My job and my work are everything to me.
I promise that I am working hard toward a healthier mind set. Again, I am on medication and will also be starting therapy soon. I will be back to work tomorrow morning, until then I sincerely apologize for any trouble my absence has caused.
I hope being this open with you two makes it a little bit easier to understand why I need these couple of days. I appreciate your time and patience with me, and thank you for allowing me this chance to explain myself.
What are our options at this point? And what are our responsibilities?
It seems that every day a new male celebrity (or politician) is being accused of having engaged in a pattern and practice of quid pro quo sexual harassment against his female coworkers over the course of several years. Quid pro quo sexual harassment involves a supervisor/manager tying an employee’s advancement opportunities to requests for sex.
While these more “flashy” situations are most likely to make the front-page news (especially when a celebrity is involved), this type of situation is less common than the hostile work environment sexual harassment (where an employee is made to feel uncomfortable by the discriminatory or harassing behavior of another co-worker, client or customer).
As an HR Professional, you are more likely to receive a complaint about a situation that could amount to hostile work environment harassment.
Take the below quiz to determine if you are able to correctly identify which behaviors warrant your attention.
Jill mentions to you in passing that notices that her manager always makes her stay late and blows kisses at her when no one is looking. She does not mention that this conduct makes her feel uncomfortable.
Since there is no formal complaint being made, you do not need to investigate.True or False?
Suzy comes into your office and complains that this morning her manager, Bob, tapped her on the shoulder. This is the only time Bob has ever touched Suzy.
While Bob has never engaged in this behavior before, you feel that you should address the complaint with Bob.True or False?
This morning, you learned that over the weekend one of your managers, Mark, attended a house party with a group of his subordinates. At the party, Mark was kissing one of his subordinates.
Since this conduct occurred outside of work and at a non-company function, you have no obligation to conduct an investigation.True or False?
You overheard Tom, one of your line workers, asking Jane, another line worker, if she wanted to go on a date with him. Jane declined and told Tom she had a boyfriend. This is not sexual harassment.True or False?
Sally has complained that her coworker, George, has been texting her offensive messages and obscene pictures from his personal cell phone. Since the messages were not sent when George was working, you do not need to investigate.True or False?
Learn from the Weinstein Company’s Mistakes
Before They Hurt Your Business
The recent scandal involving Harvey Weinstein and his company continues to make news on a regular basis, leaving most people wondering: “How does sexual misconduct of this magnitude go unchecked for so long?”
The Weinstein Company itself is no doubt asking yet another serious question: “Is the Company liable for Weinstein’s actions?
This information is provided by ePlace Solutions, Inc. which is solely responsible for its content. ePlace Solutions, Inc. is not engaged in rendering legal or other professional services. Federal and state laws are more complex than presented here. This information is simplified for the sake of brevity and is not a substitute for legal advice. ePlace Solutions, Inc. disclaims any liability, loss or risk incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, of the use and application of any of the contents of this information.