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General questions about HRM roles in promoting diversity

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Part 1
When we bring people of diverse cultures and backgrounds together into the workplace, there are numerous opportunities for conflict to occur. To focus your discussion we will look at two different types of ways people differ from other people--one with little to no protected by law, and one that has protections. No protection--for example--appearance (attractiveness, hair style, hair color, tattoos, or weight), criminal history, family, people who wear lots of cologne, smokers, overhead music lovers, economic background or other ways not normally protected by anti-discrimination laws. And, then choose one way they differ but are protected by law (age, race, national origin, color, disability, gender, for example).

For each type of conflict that you choose, describe how a flair up/conflict might occur in a workplace. Bring in real-to-life examples. What are possible positive and negative outcomes of these conflicts? Bring in court cases if they apply.
What might HRM's role be in managing each situation? Discuss.

What could HRM do to prevent a similar occurrence from happening in the future?
Should HRM nurture and promote diversity such as the types of diversity that you describe? Why or why not?
What is meant by an "inclusive work environment" as it relates to the examples that you provide?

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This paper will address what happens when people of diverse cultures and backgrounds come together into the workplace, and what opportunities there are for conflict to occur. This will cover two different types of ways people differ from other people - those with little to no protection and those with protected rights. Each conflict selected will describe how a flair up might occur in the workplace. Positive or negative outcomes of these conflicts will be detailed. Real life examples or court cases may be sighted.

Diverse Cultures and Backgrounds in the Workplace

Conflict with Appearance - Tattoos

Employers are free to set dress codes and grooming standards according to what they feel their business code should be. When it comes to tattoos and body piercings, no federal or state law protects the employee from discrimination on the basis of their appearance. Employees have tried to connect the tattoos and body art to religion, gender, or national origin which the federal and state laws protect (Law.com, 2005).

An example of body piercing discrimination occurred at Costco (Wellner, 2005). "Kimberly Cloutier, a Costco cashier who was terminated after refusing to remove her eyebrow piercing, alleged that she was discriminated against based on her religion. Cloutier refused to comply with Costco's dress code prohibiting facial or tongue jewelry, citing her membership in the Church of Body Modification, which practices piercing, tattooing, branding, transdermal or subcutaneous implants and body manipulation such as flesh hook suspensions and pulling (Wellner, 2005)."

The court found that Costco had no reason to accommodate Cloutier's request that she not come under the dress code for the company. The court upheld that Cloutier would not be abiding by Costco's "neat, clean, and professional image (Wellner, 2005). Dress codes are upheld in court when it comes to ...

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