employers regulating off-the-job activities

employers regulating off-the-job activities

JB
JB

January 28th, 2005, 10:38 pm #1

Someone posted a link about California considering making topless sunbathing an infraction instead of a misdemeanor statewide (it is now up to local governments) and I found another interesting article that relates to body freedom because if it is alright to fire people for smoking, where would it stop? The article mentions that a woman was fired for having a pro-Kerry sticker on her car. Also, if an employer can fire an employee for smoking, what would prevent them from firing someone who drinks coffee or eats junk food:

http://www.latimes.com/news/printeditio ... &cset=true



California is a strange place.
Quote
Share

michaela
michaela

January 28th, 2005, 10:49 pm #2

I saw the spokeperson for the company that soays No Smoking even on your own time on one of the morning new shows yesterday. I thought it was outrageous. I guess they can do whatever they want as long as no one challenges them.
Quote
Share

JB
JB

January 28th, 2005, 10:54 pm #3

I can understand that they want to lower their healthcare costs, but I wonder why they would not offer the employee a job with reduced health benefits until they quit smoking, then I wonder why they might not then say "hey if you eat junk food, no health coverage for you!!"
Once they start discriminating, there is no stopping it. What if someone likes skydiving or SCUBA, would they be fired too?
Quote
Share

Nat
Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

January 29th, 2005, 12:03 am #4

I saw the spokeperson for the company that soays No Smoking even on your own time on one of the morning new shows yesterday. I thought it was outrageous. I guess they can do whatever they want as long as no one challenges them.
Smoking is a difficult question. I'm all for letting people do what they want as long as they don't harm others but there is now considerable evidence that smokers endanger the health of people around them, especially children. Just the other day there was a new study out of Britain that found children of a smoking parent were much more likely to develop lung cancer during their life even if they themselves never smoked at all. If any other product caused health problems like this it would be banned immediately.

http://www.forbes.com/lifestyle/health/ ... 23688.html
Quote
Like
Share

michaela
michaela

January 29th, 2005, 12:37 am #5

I can't agree more about smoking, but as for employers having any say over what people do on their own time...this is so wrong it isn't even funny. They can never say that they will fire a person for smoking cigarettes as long as they are still legal. If they do it is discrimination, and if they don't hire you in the first place because you smoke it is the same thing, and they are leaving themselves wide open for some huge legal action. They do have the right to say you can't take illegal drugs and they can inforce that by having drug testing, but not when the substance they are trying to ban is legal.
Quote
Share

JB
JB

January 29th, 2005, 12:46 am #6

I saw the spokeperson for the company that soays No Smoking even on your own time on one of the morning new shows yesterday. I thought it was outrageous. I guess they can do whatever they want as long as no one challenges them.
I can understand that they would want to reduce the cost of providing health benefits to employees and many employers require prospective employees to pass a medical exam, so they already discriminate to some extent.

I just think that if they can do this, what would keep them from deciding what you wear, eat, drink, watch on tv, etc.
Quote
Share

Nat
Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

January 29th, 2005, 12:50 am #7

I can't agree more about smoking, but as for employers having any say over what people do on their own time...this is so wrong it isn't even funny. They can never say that they will fire a person for smoking cigarettes as long as they are still legal. If they do it is discrimination, and if they don't hire you in the first place because you smoke it is the same thing, and they are leaving themselves wide open for some huge legal action. They do have the right to say you can't take illegal drugs and they can inforce that by having drug testing, but not when the substance they are trying to ban is legal.
Well we have two issues here- health insurance costs are a hugh problem for employers now and they are pressured by their insurers to do whatever they can to cut claims. It could come down to choosing between smoking or having no health insurance.

As to the child-health thing, I can think of no other instance where you are legally allowed to damage the health of another person, let alone a child. It wouldn't surprise me if one day smoking parents will be charged with child endangerment just as a pregnant mothers who drink or take drugs are now.
Quote
Like
Share

Nat
Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

January 29th, 2005, 12:55 am #8

I can understand that they would want to reduce the cost of providing health benefits to employees and many employers require prospective employees to pass a medical exam, so they already discriminate to some extent.

I just think that if they can do this, what would keep them from deciding what you wear, eat, drink, watch on tv, etc.
Well there would have to be a rational justification for any off-job requirements. Something which effects their health insurance costs or employee productivity is a legitimate concern. What one wears at home or watches on TV certainly is not.
Quote
Like
Share

peter
peter

January 29th, 2005, 2:09 am #9

Well we have two issues here- health insurance costs are a hugh problem for employers now and they are pressured by their insurers to do whatever they can to cut claims. It could come down to choosing between smoking or having no health insurance.

As to the child-health thing, I can think of no other instance where you are legally allowed to damage the health of another person, let alone a child. It wouldn't surprise me if one day smoking parents will be charged with child endangerment just as a pregnant mothers who drink or take drugs are now.
Hello!!!!!
Smoking cigarettes is legal! Restricting the public places it is allowed is one thing. To regulate a persons right to indulge themselves in a legal substance in non restricted is insane.
I would have to say that those that drink alcohol should be lumped in there as well if it is a matter of health costs, it is as damaging to the individual as well as those on the periphery.
Quote
Share

JB
JB

January 29th, 2005, 2:13 am #10

Well we have two issues here- health insurance costs are a hugh problem for employers now and they are pressured by their insurers to do whatever they can to cut claims. It could come down to choosing between smoking or having no health insurance.

As to the child-health thing, I can think of no other instance where you are legally allowed to damage the health of another person, let alone a child. It wouldn't surprise me if one day smoking parents will be charged with child endangerment just as a pregnant mothers who drink or take drugs are now.
I think we will soon see parents being sued by their children for child abuse related to second-hand smoke. I don't know of too many people who smoke around their children these days, the smokers I know take it outside in order to protect their children.
Quote
Share