Re: No Smokers Wanted in Houston (was: Tech Writers Wanted...)

Subject: Re: No Smokers Wanted in Houston (was: Tech Writers Wanted...)
From: Stephen Arrants <arrants -at- BRIGHTWARE -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 6 Mar 1997 16:19:32 -0800

On Thursday, March 06, 1997 4:11 PM, Patrice
Poutre[SMTP:patrice -at- EPIC -dot- COM] wrote:
> Deborah Silvi posted a job opening at the request
> of her employer:
>
> > Information Developer...
>
> The last requirement was:
>
> > Must be a non-smoker.
>
> Is this requirement enforceable? I live in
> California and find this requirement strange.
> For one thing, it has been illegal to smoke
> in the workplace for quite a while now.
> Are the laws as strict in Texas as they are
> here in California? If not, is this requirement
> necessary because the company is promoting a
> smoke-free workplace? Even so, smokers could
> smoke outside - they can use "designated smoking
> areas" outside.
> For another thing, I just don't see how being
> a smoker would affect the employee's ability
> to perform his or her job functions (unless ten-
> minute cigarette breaks were taken every five
> minutes).
> Patrice
> patrice -at- epic -dot- com

Some companies, trying to reduce costs, are trying to put things like
this into effect. Some rationalize it by saying that since smokers,
generally, get ill more frequently, therefore we can get more productive
workers by requiring non-smokers.
While I'm not a fan of smoking (though I do it myself), I wonder what's
next? "Must be past child-bearing years."? "Must not be a diabetic or
pre-diabetic."? "Must submit to regular HIV-tests"? (Yes, I know, some
of these are clearly illegal....)

When does an employer have a right to determine what you do in your
private life? At what point do your personal choices affect his/her
ability to run a business?

For myself, I'd pass on adverts with these kind of
"pre-qualifications"...

steve arrants

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