Over the years sexual harassment has been revered on a higher level of unacceptability than ever before. Companies are setting high standards for employees concerning sexual harassment. Usually, they implement a code of ethics to encourage an ethical decision making process in the minds of their employees. People inside an organization need to know what is considered to be illicit behavior. With sexual harassment, the scale is very narrow. It can range from petitioning sexual favors, vulgar language, or any type of inappropriate touching. In the case study, “An accusation of Sexual harassment in Pro Sports,” the employers were dealing with being accused of verbally abusing and sexually harassing Ms. Brown Sanders over a two year period and once she blew the whistle to top management, she was fired a month later.
In my opinion, what is known as sexual harassment was not as popular a decade ago. Today, I feel that the line of intended hospitality and sexual harassment is extremely thin. People must filter what they say, how they say things, and how they may innocently touch the shoulder of their fellow employees, rather male or female. Based on the facts in the Sander’s verses Madison Square Garden (MSG) case, I believe that MSG could not have prevented themselves from liability, according to the Employers Liability for Employee’s Act which states, “employers are liable for the criminal conduct of their employee’s” (smallbusiness.findlaw.com). According to Principles of Management, the author insists, “top managers are responsible for monitoring their business environment” (Williams 8). It does not even matter if top management does not know what is going on, they will still be held responsible for their employee’s conduct. If I was a part of Madison Square Garden’s top management, I would make sure that I had a well established code of ethics and I would let it be known that anyone who violates the discretionary measures will be reprimanded to the highest degree, plus fined.
I say this because of the environmental changes occurring in the sports world, women are a huge part of the fan base; therefore, to uphold our image, to continue to maximize our profit momentum, to stop unfavorable publicity by the media, and to let women know that we value their opinion, would help us to remain a profitable establishment. In addition, I would do my best to deal with problematic issues with temporal immediacy. Often victims of sexual harassment have long term effects that can have a tendency to hurt them psychologically, mentally, and emotionally. The allegation against Madison Square Garden in this case does raise an ethical question with regard to the employee’s actions. In my opinion, the company became aware of Ms Brown’s complaint and instead of helping her; they allowed her to be fired. Even when she won her case for 11 million dollars; MSG neglected their social responsibility and threatened that they will appeal the decision, rather than giving a formal apology to her and their commentators.
One cliché my grandmother use to say is, “the apple does not fall far from the tree.” To me, this means that many of the characteristics displayed by the employee’s are simultaneously stemmed from the top. To conclude, nowadays, it is more common for people to report to a higher authority or a supervisor that they have been sexual harassed or assaulted. Once these issues have been acknowledged and report to top management, they should not turn away with blind eyes. Certain actions must take place if a report has been made and the company must figure out what kind of harassment took place, so they can determine what the next step of discipline will be. I believe that companies who have adopted clauses for sexual harassment on men and women were long overdue; especially, with women, who have usually kept silent, but have dealt with solidified objectification for years.
An Employers Liability for Employee’s Act. Find Law. 27 September, 2014. http://www.smallbusiness.findlaw.com Dessler, Gary. Human Resource Management. An Accusation of Sexual Harassment in Pro Sports. Williams, Chuck. Principles of Management. Top Management Responsibilities. South Western: Madison, OH. 2015. pp. 8.