No Smoking Allowed - On the Job or Off (Case study)
Q1. Should employers have the right to ban or restrict smoking by their employees at the
workplace? Why do you think so?
I believe that smoking is a major health hazard that will impede every employee to have the right to work in a safe and healthy environment. Since smoking is a serious health issue for everyone involved in it, nonsmokers have the right to not be exposed to any related health risks. Hence, banning and restricting smoking in the workplace is a must and can't be seen as a personal violation of rights.
Q2. Should employers have the right to restrict or ban smoking by their employees off the job, or charge smoking employees more for health insurance? Why do you think so?
Many laws or policies at work must not go beyond the working environment. In this case, I believe employers have no right to restrict or to ban smoking off the job to their employees. Doing so will mean violating employees' personal life and privacy rights. Off the job, smoking supposed to be an own decision made by the employees themselves. But when considering the extra health costs employers may pay on smoker employees' health, it is fair to charge them more for health insurance. Finally, the best thing always is to support and educate those smokers to quit and have a better life and health rather than punishment or unfair treatment.
Q3. Should the government regulate smoking at work? If so, what would be the best public policy? Why do you think so?
Governments should always have the right to regulate. But internal business policies related to smoking and health concerns should be left partially to the businesses to deal with. Therefore, if employers need to approve smoking while working they can but they have to designate a special smoking area and at the same time respect the privacy of others.
Q4. Should multinational firms have a single corporate policy on smoking in the workplace, or vary their policies depending on local laws and norms of behavior in various countries where they do business?
Corporate policies should always stand for what the business is there for. It's always recommended that when working in other countries (international) firms must apply local laws and cope with the local culture for success proposes. But some values and policies have to be implemented nationally or internationally whether the same or with less intensity. Not doing so will reflect on the employees negatively by feeling the unfair treatment and losing trust. Always to be unique there should be unique corporate policies that are applied everywhere and the firm is known to be one of the best to implement.