Legal, Safety, and Regulatory Requirements
Human resource managers are not essentially labour sellers or buyers. Instead, their most important role is to secure labour on behalf of the organization and manage the resources. This role brings the professionals into constant contact with the laws and regulations that govern human resources. Thus, the part that human resource policies play in an organization is critical in ensuring that employment laws are satisfied and exceeded. The federal and state governments consistently influence the work of human resource professionals by enacting laws that dictate the treatment of staff members and the environment within which they work (Wootton, 2014). These varied laws ensure the safety, equity, fair treatment, and security of the staff and the organization. Thus, common sense and compassion in the workplace have been replaced by litigation as human resource managers create policies that comply with the different regulations.
The Department of Labor
Various stakeholders affect the American terms and environment of employment. The Department of Labor (DOL) is one agency that plays a critical role in governing the profession. Its mission is to ensure that the welfare of employees, working and retired, as well as job seekers, is addressed. At the same time, the DOL also monitors the working conditions, opportunities for advancement, and compliance with the rights of employees. Based on this mission, the DOL must create regulations and laws that fulfil these roles. It also works through other agencies specializing in various employment aspects related to the primary task. These agencies include the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Office of Disability Employment Policy, Wage and Hour Division, Employee and Training Administration, and Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (U.S. Department of Labor, 2021). Each of these agencies carries out distinct roles that ensure the welfare of all human resources is addressed appropriately. For instance, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) provides the workplace is safe. Thus, it creates regulations that enforce the same and require that all employers comply with the guidelines (U.S. Department of Labor, 2021). Thus, the litigations that govern the workplace come from different agencies that aim to ensure that human resources are treated relatively and remunerated accordingly.
Laws that forbid Workplace Discrimination
The U.S. laws and regulations forbid discrimination of individuals due to race, gender, skin colour, nationality, sexual orientation, age, disability, or religion. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is responsible for enacting laws that ensure fair treatment of all employees and candidates. These laws apply to all work situations, such as firing, hiring, training, remunerations, promotions, and harassment. The EEOC investigates any discrimination against employers with more than 15 employees. The investigation is conducted fairly and accurately. If the allegations are true, a settlement of the charges is established. If this is impossible, the EEOC files a lawsuit against the employer. Various factors, such as the evidence’s strength, the issues found in the case, and the court’s decision’s impact on enforcing the laws prohibiting discrimination. In addition, the EEOC also conducts awareness programs to educate employers and employees on discrimination (EEOC, 2021). Human resource officials are keen on identifying areas where discrimination can occur quickly or without notice to avoid such litigations. For some organizations, compliance has become critical for safety. However, other entities realize the benefit of employing different employees who create a diversified workforce, which provides additional competitive advantages (Murmu & Bisht, 2014).
The discrimination of disabled individuals in all public and private sectors is illegal. The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) was enacted to ensure that all individuals, especially people with disabilities, access opportunities like the abled. The act has five titles that address different sectors of the public. In the employment context, employers with at least 15 employees are expected to abide by this law. The ADA is more or less similar to the EEOC’s requirement for equal treatment of all individuals. The only difference is that the ADA protects a specific population against discrimination: the disabled (ADA National Network, 2017). This law is necessary for ensuring that disabled individuals can access employment and work in a conducive environment. Based on remarks that disabled individuals have made, it is difficult to work with the abled individuals who view them as different. In addition, employers tend to offer facilities that do not improve the lives of people with disabilities significantly. The main issue is that they do not ask about their needs and instead act to avoid compliance issues. This fear is counterproductive as most disabled individuals leave their workplaces eventually. In addition, other employers avoid hiring such individuals due to the perceived costs of improving the workplace to ensure their comfort (Hastings, 2010). Thus, as employers seek to comply with this law, they must show humanity and engage these individuals to ensure their work environments are comfortable.
The Department of Homeland Security
Security is an important aspect that enables employees to conduct their roles adequately. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) ensures all citizens are safe. The executive department carries out its leading role through various agencies. The laws that the different agencies enact enable the administrative department to fulfil its primary purpose. One of the ways that the DHS protects individuals from exploitation by employers is by prohibiting human trafficking for both adults and children, sexual trade, slavery, and forced labour. Laws such as the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Prevention Act, the Customs and Facilitations and Trade Enforcement Reauthorization Act of 2009, the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004, the PROTECT Act of 2003, and the Mann Act of 1910 protect individuals from aforementioned societal ills (DHS, 2019). Thus, employers are expected to look for loopholes allowing such illegal activities. Failure to be proactive can lead to legal issues that consume time and financial resources. The role of the DHS is more sensitive and tends to cover an extensive context. Fulfilment of its obligations ensures that employees are safe from others who may want to use them for illegal activities. Therefore, these laws play a significant role in ensuring the safety of individuals within the American territory.
The welfare of employees is governed through government agencies, which enact laws that employers should observe. These laws are essential as they tame rogue employees who may take advantage of their workforce in different ways. Such agencies boost employees’ confidence in the country’s judicial processes because the filed complaints are investigated thoroughly and acted upon. Human resource officials ensure the policies observe the laws and regulations. Failure to do so results in litigation and a bad reputation for the organization. These litigations have replaced common sense and compassion because these virtues are unfamiliar to all employers and individuals.
ADA National Network. (2017). An Overview of the Americans With Disabilities Act. Retrieved from ADA National Network: https://adata.org/factsheet/ADA-overview
DHS. (2019). Human Trafficking Laws & Regulations. Retrieved from Homeland Security: https://www.dhs.gov/human-trafficking-laws-regulations
EEOC. (2021). Overview. Retrieved from U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission: https://www.eeoc.gov/overview
Hastings, R. R. (2010). Has the Americans with Disabilities Act Made a Difference? Retrieved from SHRM: https://www.shrm.org/resourcesandtools/hr-topics/behavioral-competencies/global-and-cultural-effectiveness/pages/hastheadamadeadifference.aspx
Murmu, N., & Bisht, M. (2014). Managing Workforce Diversity in the Era of Globalisation. Advances in Economics and Business Management, 1(3), 234-236.
U.S. Department of Labor. (2021). Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Retrieved from United States Department of Labor: https://www.osha.gov/
U.S. Department of Labor. (2021). About Us. Retrieved from U.S. Department of Labor: https://www.dol.gov/general/aboutdol
Wootton, D. (2014). The Impact Of Employment Regulation On Human Resource Professionals: A Study Set In The Public Sector. Retrieved from https://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/6730/1/Wootton16PhD.pdf
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Human resources departments have evolved significantly throughout modern history. The state and federal governments have been the one force that has shaped human resources more than any other and has been most responsible for how the department functions today. Human resources departments have always been highly influenced by the passage of new laws (e.g., HIPAA and the Affordable Care Act), regulatory policies (e.g., nondiscrimination/harassment or retaliation policies that are enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)), and safety protections (such as those enforced by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)).
Write a 700- to 1,050-word paper that examines the effect of legal, safety, and regulatory requirements on the human resources process. Your essay should focus on employee-related regulations established by the United States, such as the Department of Labor, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), and the Department of Homeland Security.
Include your thoughts on the following statement:
“Common sense and compassion in the workplace have been replaced by litigation.”
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