Discrimination Case Analysis Essay

Total Length: 2253 words ( 8 double-spaced pages)

Total Sources: 2

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Case Statement

This case involved a white woman and a black man who had an encounter in a parking lot and there was controversy if discriminatory action ensued. The two, Hope and Dillon, gave two different versions of the encounter.

At its very core, the conflict in the case is about racial discrimination. Legal advocates and scholars have given various definitions to racism and have focused on disparate impact and differential treatment. Their definitions can be crystallized into differential treatment occurring when individuals are accorded unequal treatment because of their race and disparate impact occurring when individuals are subject to the same treatment based on specific predefined procedures and rules, but where the procedures and rules are structured in favor of one group (Devah Pager & Hana Shepherd, 2008).

Issues to Resolve

Where there is a history of discriminative practices, an exchange like the one between Dillon and Hope is just one of many that have happened. Jack should appreciate both parties' points-of-view and respond appropriately to each one. The objective should be creating an environment where such incidents are openly discussed in a constructive manner without blame, judgment and defensiveness. There is need to understand the pattern of prejudiced beliefs and attitudes about blacks could be grounded on negative stereotypes about the race (Lawrence D. Bobo & Cybelle Fox, 2003).

Alternatives Courses of Action

1. Jack should use the event to push for organization-wide action. Given the responses other employees had to the incident, it is evident there is racial tension in the organization.

2. Jack should allow the two to narrate their experience to the other individual without being interrupted and also explain the historical context in which the event occurred. If the two can view their actions as reasonable, given the contexts, then blame should immediately stop.

Evaluating the Alternatives

1. There is always the possibility of a threat to security when "piggyback" situations take place. There is need for identification, regardless of sex or race. Hope's actions could have been necessary as protective measures.

2. There should be open conversations so employees can freely interact with one another and learn more about each other's cultures. Trying to understand both parties yielded several solutions to the problem.

Course of Action

There were several factors that influenced Dillon, Hope and Jack. To resolve the problem, they need to be patient and understand where each person is coming from. Besides just having an understanding of other people's culture, people should be able to adjust to other people's points-of-view so they understand them better. Further, Jack should have an open conversation with all his employees about these occurrences so they are accepting of the different cultures they hail from.

Case Discussion Points

There are several studies that have shown that blacks and other minority groups are disadvantaged in the current labor market. The particular reasons for the disadvantage and the place of race in the job market have been fiercely contested.
Social scientists and economists predict that the labor market's demands would eventually eliminate most forms of racial bias at the workplace (Lawrence D. Bobo & Cybelle Fox, 2003). In the white collar job market, African-Americans are sometimes assumed to be incompetent by white coworkers and clients and face various kinds of racial bias including being excluded from informal social networks. They may be skipped for promotions and greater administrative duties. The discriminative practices usually hinder their prospects for professional advancement and growth (Dr. Lilly Fermandes & Dr. Nora Hadi Q. Alsaeed, 2014).

Courses of Action in Resolving Discrimination

The settings promoting or discouraging such discrimination are identified and the role played by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the Human Rights Commission as well as social, cultural and economic rights in preventing racial discrimination is examined. The liability of the employer in promoting discrimination is also to be discussed from the point-of-view of African-Americans (Dr. Lilly Fernandes & Dr. Nora Hadi Q. Alsaeed, 2014). Research shows that diversity management can have a good spillover effect on the rest of the workforce. It has been found that most women hired for jobs on the grounds of affirmative action actually were qualified for the positions they held but the fact that affirmative action was involved stigmatizes their position regardless of ability and qualification. Research has also shown that where ability is the same, creativity is higher among heterogeneous teams than in homogeneous teams (Harold Andrew Patrick & Vincent Raj Kumar, 2012).

Weakness in Action Plan

Several studies indicate that current discrimination in the workplace is a major concern. Employers often have stereotypical views about blacks and rate them as possessing weaker hard and soft skills than their white colleagues. Some of these managers openly admit to employing discriminatory recruiting procedures when hiring. This results to blacks being hired at a far lower rate than their white counterparts even where controls exist to avoid such a reality. Gender discrimination makes the issue even worse for women of color. Social class seems to not have a big impact on racial discrimination, but the actions are reported more frequently as education levels rise (Lawrence D. Bobo & Cybelle Fox, 2003).

Course of Action in such a Situation

Every person should be more careful in a social group like the one at the organization with their words and actions so they take care not to offend other people. To solve the issue, Jack needs to acquaint himself with others' cultures and share them with the people around him. He should also talk about the incident with other employers and take action to reform the behavior of employees toward one another. Further, he could have actually noticed the existence of unfair treatment of Dillon and acted on his own volition before issues escalated. Verna Meyers puts forth a suggestion explaining the conflict of managing a diverse workforce explaining that a series of micro-aggressions can at times be as serious as blatant actions of aggression. The….....

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Lawrence D. Bobo, & Cybelle Fox. (2003). Race, Racism, and Discrimination: Bridging Problems, Methods, and Theory in Social. Social Psychology Quarterly, 319-332.

Business & Human Rights Resource Centre. (2014). Coca-Cola lawsuit (re racial discrimination in USA). Business & Human Rights Resource Centre.

Devah Pager, & Hana Shepherd. (2008). The Sociology of Discrimination: Racial Discrimination in Employment, Housing, Credit, and Consumer Markets. Annual review of sociology, 181-209.

Dr Lilly Fernandes, & Dr. Nora Hadi Q. Alsaeed. (2014). AFRICAN-AmericanS AND WORKPLACE DISCRIMINATION. European Journal of English Language and Literature Studies, 56-76.

Harold Andrew Patrick, & Vincent Raj Kumar. (2012). Managing Workplace Diversity. SAGE Open Journals.

Jeffrey C. Connor. (2000, September - October). It Wasn't About Race. Or Was It? Harvard Business Review.

Maria del Carmen Triana, Mevan Jayasinghe, & Jenna R. Pieper. (2015). Perceived workplace racial discrimination and its correlates: A meta-analysis. Management Department Faculty Publications, 491-513.

Reginald A. Byron. (2010). Discrimination, Complexity, and the Public/Private Sector Question. Work and Occupations, 435-475.

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