Hooters Current Ethical Issue

Topics: Ethics, Hooters, Employment Pages: 3 (1137 words) Published: June 14, 2010
Hooters Current Ethical Issue
Over the years the national chain restaurant Hooters has had lawsuits brought against them for discrimination based on gender. Currently, the issue is weight discrimination. Not just one lawsuit, but two, and maybe three lawsuits may be filed. The waitresses claim that they lost their jobs because they weighed too much. They were put on a 30-day weight probation and offered gym memberships. The ethical issue here is the fact the company practices such discrimination and justifies their actions by claiming that the waitresses are entertainers. Not to mention, the waitress in question weighed 13 pounds less than when she was hires in 2008. Unfortunately for Hooters the Michigan Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act Prohibits discrimination by employers based on height and weight. Hooters is a large global corporation with a large legal department. An over site of this law, from 1976, is typically unheard of occurring in such a large corporation. This is an example of operating a business how the corporation sees fit. Without any regard to the law or individuals that work for them. Which Ethical Theories Apply

Consequentialists make decisions based upon the consequences of their decision. The consequences to operate their business by placing employees on weight probation, even though there is a law in the state of Michigan that makes such an act illegal, outweighed any possible lawsuit that may arise. The company obviously believes that a lawsuit that may happen is less costly that to operate their business in accordance with the state’s laws.

Deontological theory states that a decision based on what is right according to the value of rights. Clearly, Hooters, does not value the rights of their employees too much. If they did, they would not conduct business in a manner that goes against state laws. As well as the feelings of the employees themselves were not taken into account. The waitress in question weighed 13...

References: About Hooters. (2008). Retrieved from http://www.Hooters.com/About.aspx
Engel, J. (2010). Rare Michigan law may help waitress win weight discrimination lawsuit against Hooters. The Grand Rapids Press. Retrieved from http://www.mlive.com/news/index.ssf/2010/05/rare_michigan_law_may_help_wai.html
Jun, C. (2010). Hooters official disputes 2 suits claiming weight discrimination. The Detroit News. Retrieved from http://www.detnews.com/article/20100602/METRO03/6020381/Hooters-official-disputes-2-suits-claiming-weight-discrimination#ixzz0qDkTARf0
Neavling, S. (2010, June 6). Hooters case sparks debate about weight discrimination. Freep.com. Retrieved from http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/artikkel?Avis=C4&Dato=20100606&Kategori=NEWS05&Lopenr=6060530&Ref=AR&template=fullarticle
Smith, M. T. (2010, May 17). Introduction to Ethics for University of Phoenix Students [Msg. 1]. Message posted to http://University of Phoenix class forum, PHL/323 - Ethics in Management course website.
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