Cindy Breen is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in food service manage and part of the program is serving as intern with Campus Food Systems. One of the tasks Cindy is required to perform is preparing a report addressing work accidents in the food service areas. The report will address health and safety hazards as well as work related incidents of which there have been 46 to this point in her findings. Additionally, Cindy’s boss Jack has also implied that her grade for the internship as well as a good job recommendation is dependent on how she handles the accident report (Ivancevich, 2010).Even though Cindy is faced with deciding whether to do as her boss has requested, she should make the right decisions for the university, its employees and herself. In order to create a safe and healthy workplace, Cindy has to inform her boss she refuses to omit any incident or minimize accidents from the report just because her boss (Jack Platt) is more interested in the bottom line—profits and productivity. In fact some employers, injuries and illnesses as a routine part of the job and the only thing that matters is the bottom line—profits and productivity (Friend & Kohn, 2010).
In light of the fact that Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) allows employees to call and request inspections anonymously, Cindy must call OSHA and request an inspection of CFS. The accidents in which several employees had cut their hands on the meat slicer was due to safety hazards such as poorly maintained equipment and unsafe machinery. The incident involving a case of severe salmonella poisoning of a student, needs to be reported to not only OSHA, but the President of the school immediately. The student became so ill he spent three months in the hospital due to the health hazard of handling diseased seafood.
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While the students are not allowed to handle raw seafood, violations of this rule occur frequently which results in high absenteeism and turnover of full-time personnel (Ivancevich, 2010). Given Cindy’s level of angst concerning the high number of incidents and accidents that have occurred over the last year and that her boss wants her to falsify the report, she needs to address her concerns and findings to take her findings to President of the school and persuade him to take action immediately to prevent these accidents/incidents from happening again and to protect the school from possible lawsuit.
Additionally, she needs to notify the state and OSHA officials concerning this issue (Ivancevich, 2010). Cindy has several options available to her to improve and health and safety of the CFS work environment. These options/approaches include prevention and design; training and motivation; audits and inspections; and giving managers and supervisors the authority to make changes within the work place to prevent accidents and injuries (Ivancevich, 2010).
Prevention and design approach designs additional safety into the workplace through safety engineering (Ivancevich, 2010). Another option is for Cindy to recommend the establishment of a safety team to advise management on the consequence of not improving work place health and safety in terms of economic, legal and moral reasons. One of the responsibilities of CFS’ safety team would the training of the employees—demonstrating a healthy and safe working setting by showing them how to deal with hazardous characteristics of a liquid that is flammable.
Besides, a safe and healthy work environment is the right thing to do for other employees, themselves and the company unlike Jake who doesn't care about the safety of employees by encouraging omissions on the report (Friend & Kohn, 2010). The CFS safety team would also be responsible for developing communicating and information strategies to inform employees and prevent injuries while reducing risks. The safety team would also conduct in-depth analysis of incidents and accidents so as to identify risk factors (Stellman, 1998).
Given the fact that most supervisors of workers are responsible for occupational health and safety in the work place, supervisors and managers must have the power to redesign work processes within their area to accomplish this. The flip side of this is the financial loss due to injuries/accidents which may adversely affect the bottom line (Friend & Kohn, 2010). Cindy Breen cannot simply brush away her findings like her boss (Jack Platt) would like for her to do.
Regardless how hard you try and hide unethical practices and behaviors, the truth always comes out. Unfortunately it is always at the expense of not only the school, but employees and students alike. Whether Cindy minimizes her accident/incident report is ultimately up to her to make the right ethical decision. Jack Platt needs to be relieved of his job for the unethical behavior of falsifying documents that are to be sent to OSHA.
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