The Smoking Penalty: Distributive Justice or Smokism? [Book Review]

Journal of Business Ethics 84 (1):47 - 64 (2009)
This study addresses whether businesses discriminate against employees who smoke, which for the purposes of this study is called smokism. It began with a description of the employers' costs which led to the development of these smoking bans and examined several company policies as a result of these costs. The viewpoints from several perspectives toward these policies and their perceptions about smokers were also reviewed. This was followed by surveying the corporate smoking policies of 76 companies representing 287 employees in the New York City metropolitan, as well as the viewpoints of these employees on these smoking policies. Several laws regarding the rights of smokers and nonsmokers were discussed and along with the company smoking policies described earlier were compared to those firms surveyed. Next, the philosophies of Locke, Kant, Rawls, and Nozick were examined to determine whether the current smoking policies would be deemed just or discriminatory. Conclusions and implications of this research then followed the analysis of these philosophical and legislative findings
Keywords Corporate policies  discrimination  workplace  smoking policies  smoking bans
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Walter E. Block (2010). Free to Smoke. Business and Professional Ethics Journal 29 (1/4):135-153.
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