HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
There are many different barriers that hold the company success for no good. One of the reasons is the discrimination done in the age of the employees. Discrimination is the process based on the unequal treatment for the similar qualified persons in a single workplace. In general, the age discrimination is the process of treating an employee with less importance in comparison with other employees working in the workplace with respect to their age. In the United States of America, an enactment was passed with the name of age discrimination in employment act (ADEA) in 1990. The ADEA only protect those employees whose age is above forty years. In some states of USA, the ADEA is being implemented towards the younger employees also as it considers many forms of work discrimination under its belt. Wal-Mart has a history of cases that are filled with it in recent past years. Such law suits were filed under the knowledge of equal employment opportunity commission (EEOC) of USA. Amazingly, these all law suits were about the right of employment evoked by the higher management of the organization. One of such law suits filed is discussed as the case study in this paper. The case study examines the impact of age discrimination on the ability of work of aged worker inside the organization.
In the similar context, Becker (2010) and Stiglitz (1974) suggested that if the worker are discriminated on the basis of making profits then employees with less age are needed to hire. The reason is that younger employees will work at full capacity and will earn extra cash while the company also makes extra money. Such type of behavior of the economists leads to age discrimination done inside the organization.
Heckman (1998) say that age discrimination is widely done in those companies who have limited competition in the industry. It may happen that more than single firm work under the conditions of the age discriminations (Heckman, 1998).
It can be said that the level of age discrimination can be based on the narrow-mindedness of the employer, and it is hard to determine. Businesses tend to resist in hiring of newly aged employees. Stigler (1974) further says that the narrow-mindedness of the employer can elude the effect of competition while serving the payments to discriminated employee.
The law suit that will be discussed here came on press report on the date of 19th February 2015 (EEOC, 2015). In this case, EEOC file a law suit on March 12, 2014, in the district court of Dallas, Texas Northern District with the case number 3:14-cv-00908. EEOC charge the Wal-Mart against the supervisors of Keller, Texas with the subjects of harassment, discriminatory treatment, and discharge from the duty of a store manager due to the age. The age of the worker was 54 years at the time of filing the case. The suit was filed due to complain received by EEOC by the Mr. David Moorman on the account of Americans with disability act (ADA).
On the account of Wal-Mart supervisors, there are no such allegations that were charged to them by the commission (EEOC). Wal-Mart spokesman Randy Hargrove only denies the allegations imposed on the firm by saying that Wal-Mart does not give space to discriminations of any kind (Wilonsky, 2014)
However, on the behalf of Mr. David Moorman, EEOC says that he was ridiculed by the taunts made towards him by his immediate supervisors on the basis of age by the words of “old man” and “old food guy” and “You can’t teach new tricks to an old dog.” EEOC further states that he was discharged from his duties in the store when he returned from the diabetic test medical leave. Such allegations imposed by EEOC towards the manager of Wal-Mart violates the terms of age discrimination in employment act (ADEA). Under ADEA, the discrimination or age based harassments on the basis of age above 40 years in a workplace is prohibited (EEOC, 2015).
EEOC attorney claims that EEOC remains committed to prosecuting the rights of workers at any given workplace by taking legal actions in the federal court. The judiciary of the court settles the case with an approval declaration for the period of two years by the Wal-Mart that it will pay the amount of $150,000 as a relief to Mr. Moorman. The regional attorney from Dallas district office Mr. Robert Canino said that such type of insult and mocking of the experienced employee and senior citizen will not be tolerated. Moreover, it is very unfortunate for the business that both the managers and the supervisors of the company lost the focus of valuing the employees for creating a respectful workplace (Wilonsky, 2014).
A report from CNN dated 16th April 2015 elaborate the reasons that Wal-Mart is doing downsizing its stores to reduce its costs of operations. This news has turned to be right when the Wal-Mart post a news of shutting the business for six months in the cities of Texas, California, Oklahoma, and Florida (Peterson, 2015). This situation left its 2,200 workers searching for the jobs in the market. The main reason behind the closure was to recover the increased costs of operations due to increased numbers of suits filed in previous five years. Therefore, they had to lose the impact of such rising costs due to rising in the number of lawsuits filed.
Such type of actions done by the Wal-Mart Supervisors can put a negative response to the image of the company, i.e. the company gets a bad image in front its current and newly joined employees. Lahey (2008), and, Davey and Cornwall (2003) all found out the same result for the hiring situations prevailing world wide. The overall unemployment rate of US economy was falling from 6.6% to 6.2 when this case was launched, as shown in figure below:
(U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2015)
With the above discussed case of age discrimination, I personally think that there is a need for addressing the supervisors and the management of Wal-Mart with respect to its current and future employees about ADA and ADEA rules and criteria. Along with the training of its supervisors and managers they had to post notices with respect to its approval of amount given to Mr. Moorman and other employees if any future case of age discrimination arises.
In my general opinion, this case was not a case can be submerged in depths earlier before it raises it head in court. For doing that, the case was to be settled inside the organization with higher management and supervisors that can hear the feelings of Mr. Moorman so that he might keep his job till his day of retirement.
This sort of mistake leads to the suit filed against the company, and it costs around $150,000. The amount was paid under a mutually signed approval by both the parties affiliated with the case. The approval was stated over a two year period. The amount charged to the Wal-Mart for the compensation of case filed was a little lower than the nature of the suit filed. Under such circumstances faced by M. Moorman, anyone will filed the law suit against the Wal-Mart because of the working conditions or because of his immediate supervisors taunting and ridiculing and the amount demanded as compensation might be demanded higher than furnished for settlement as the person will lose the job while getting the benefit.
However, as the Wal-Mart was following the strategy of cost reduction in many areas of USA and Canada. Because of this strategy, such types of activities performed by the officials of the Wal-Mart were not helping in reducing the cost. However, they were making a raise in the working costs of the company. So they change the interviewing strategy by hiring younger workforce than the elder people in their stores.
Becker, G. S. (2010). The economics of discrimination. University of Chicago press.
Davey, J. A., & Cornwall, J. (2003). Maximising the potential of older workers. New Zealand Institute for Research on Ageing, Victoria University of Wellington.
EEOC. (2015). Wal-Mart to Pay $150,000 to Settle EEOC Age and Disability Discrimination Suit. Retrieved July 11, 2015 from http://www1.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/2-19-15.cfm
Heckman, J. J. (1998). Detecting discrimination. The Journal of Economic Perspectives, 101-116.
Lahey, J. N. (2008). Age, Women, and Hiring An Experimental Study. Journal of Human Resources, 43(1), 30-56.
Peterson, H. (2015). Wal-Mart suddenly closed 5 stores and laid off thousands of workers and no one knows why. Business Insider, Retrieved July 11, 2015 from http://www.businessinsider.com/wal-mart-suddenly-closes-stores-2015-4
Stiglitz, J. E. (1974). Theories of discrimination and economic policy. Patterns of Racial Discrimination, DC Heath and Co.
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2015). Labor Force Statistics from the Current Population Survey. Retrieved July 11, 2015 from http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS14000000
Wilonsky, R. (2014). EEOC sues Wal-Mart on behalf of fired Keller store manager. Dallas news, http://www.dallasnews.com/business/business-headlines/20140312-eeoc-sues-wal-mart-on-behalf-of-fired-keller-store-manager.ece