How many times have you seen this anacronym listed after a company’s advertisement for an open position they are looking to fill? Pretty much all the time unless it’s some local landscaper or painter looking for help. People want to work for a company that will treat all their employees (or associates as most companies prefer) equally and fairly. I would have to say that by and large that is the case in most business today. Or a least most business feels that they abide by this credo all the time.
But those of us who have been in the workplace for say longer than 6 months realize that what a company states on a mission statement and what they do toward their employees in reality are usually night and day! If a person works for a company that has a unionized workforce then they have some protection from just being shown the door for whatever reason the company decides. But it is far different if the individual is in management at a unionized company. They have no such protection. There is no equal opportunity then. Many times when that person is let go, the reason given and the real reason are not even remotely the same. Kind of like when a head coach is fired but the owner states that they came to a mutual decision to go in another direction. Yeah because you fired him!
It reminded me of a situation that took place at one of the largest employers in WNY a while back. What they said to employees who were let go and what they did in the hiring of a new employee illustrates the gray area that exists under the banner of being an EOE.
Dunlop has been producing tires in Buffalo since 1922. When Goodyear purchased Dunlop in 1999 very little changed. But since then there has been a move to doing things the way Goodyear does them. As a result several floor supervisors have been let go (fired) for a variety of reasons. Under the Dunlop regime most would still be employed there. Among the reasons given to those managers were: they didn’t follow direction from upper management, attendance problem, shift not producing established quotas, not a good fit for the new Goodyear, no college degree, et al.
The bottom line in all of these firings was the fact that New York State is an “at will” employer, meaning they can terminate an employee for any reason and that person has no legal recourse. Currently the only state in the Union where this is not true is Montana, who has enacted legislation to protect these type of employees.
But one disturbing move was made just this past year in the hiring of an area manager. Desperate for managers who have any kind of college degree, they hired one female as an area manager last year despite the fact that she had been arrested the previous year for a felony possesion of marijuana. The following clip is from the Buffalo News:
Seat belt stop results in marijuana seizure
Updated: August 21, 2010, 2:32 AM
A Newstead woman who was stopped by state troopers for an apparent seat belt violation at Bailey and Walden avenues Tuesday was found with more than a pound of marijuana in her vehicle, state police reported Wednesday. The woman, 32, was charged with felony criminal possession of marijuana.