Human Resources Management

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The Taft-Hartley Act of 1947 also specified unfair labor practices for both management and unions. These are presented in Table 13-1 in your textbook. Read the Ethical Dilemma, “Are Unfair Practices Unethical,” on p. 518 in your textbook and answer the question presented in the case.

Questions and Answers

Question: Are the unfair labor practice shown in table 13-1 (in the textbook) also unethical? Answer: The business dictionary defines ethics as “The basic concepts and fundamental principles of right human conduct. It includes study of universal values such as the essential equality of all men and women, human or natural rights, obedience to the law of land, concern for health and safety and, increasingly, also for the natural environment.” Based on the definition above, the unfair labor practice does touch on aspects that affect the “basic concepts and principles of human rights” such as, forms of discrimination, and the act of dominating, hence YES, the unfair labor practices shown are unethical. Are there circumstances under which activities might be legal (e.g., cutting off healthcare benefits for striking workers) but at the same time also be unethical? According to “The primary difference between legal and ethical is definition. Laws are clearly written, maintained, and agreed upon. Ethics are subjective, based in large part on individual belief systems. Different cultures around the world have different beliefs on the types of behaviors that are ethical and unethical.” Yes, based on the definition above, it is in-fact possible to have an activity that is legal and yet unethical at the same time. An activity such as abortion is legal, but at the same time deemed unethical.