Employment Law

For your follow-up postings expand on the posts of your peers. On which impact or influence of employment law points do you agree? Disagree? Is there additional information that you can share? When possible, provide additional resources to support your statements to your peers so the group may conduct further research, should they choose. There are many laws in place that govern workplace environments to ensure all employees are treated fairly in terms of both positive reinforcement and negative consequences. Some of these laws include collective bargaining, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, and Title IX and all make sure every worker is offered the same treatment by his or her employer.             Collective bargaining occurs at institutions where employees belong to a union both in the public and private sector. The process of collective bargaining allows workers to negotiate contracts to outline the terms of their employment including pay, benefits, hours, time off, job health, and safety policies. It also responsible for solving conflict in the workplace and ensures there is not an abuse of power by leaders of the institution (America’s Unions, n.d.).             Prior to my current role as an administrator, I was part of a union at my last school and based on personal experience I don’t feel union laws are extremely beneficial to certain employees. In an educational institution, union representatives are present to have discussions with administrators or board members as equals to negotiate working conditions; however, the reps are usually not treated as equals (National Education Association, n.d.). In my previous experience, the administration had a difficult time with the term equal and situations turned very quickly into an “us vs. them” causing bitterness, hostility, and a large teacher turnover rate. Unions are there to protect tenured teachers, but help very little with teachers on a year to year contract since they can be terminated at the end of the year without reason. This leads to teachers becoming lax and doing the bare minimum to get by while they are making a much higher salary than others because they know they cannot be let go.             Title VI of the Civil Rights Act states, “No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance” (U.S. Department of Education, 2020). While I agree that nobody should be discriminated based on the criteria above, higher educational institutions have started to hire candidates that may not be the best choice for the position; however, they may contribute to the diversity of the program. While I’m in total favor of providing equal opportunities, when candidates lack certain skills it may lead to the educational institution getting a not so favorable reputation, though on the opposite side of the spectrum, outsiders may value the diversity the institution brings to students.             Title IX was passed in 1972 and prevents discrimination in education or any program that receives federal funding based on gender. It states, “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance” (Melnick, 2020). This law also includes employment at institutions of higher education. Again, I agree with the fact that no matter what gender a person is, he or she should have an equal opportunity for filling an open position as long as the appropriate qualifications for that position are met.             All of the above laws in the workplace allow for an increase in diversity among employees as employers have to make sure they are providing and even playing field when interviewing potential candidates. While these laws are helpful in ensuring no one is discriminated against, they can also be harmful to the institution if they are responsible for having a certain percent of diverse employees. This can turn into “token hires” instead of hiring based on skills and qualifications. America’s Unions. Collective Bargaining: AFL-CIO. AFL. https://aflcio.org/what-unions-do/empower-workers/collective-bargaining. Melnick, R. S. (2020, June 11). Analyzing the Department of Education’s final Title IX rules on sexual misconduct. Brookings. https://www.brookings.edu/research/analyzing-the-department-of-educations-final-title-ix-rules-on-sexual-misconduct/. National Education Association. Frequently Asked Questions: Collective Bargaining in Higher Education. NEA. http://www.nea.org/home/62147.htm. U.S. Department of Education. (2020, January 10). Education and Title VI. Home. https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/hq43e4.html.

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