In this week’s discussion, you shared a challenging situation that you faced in the workplace around diversity. Now, you have an opportunity to reflect on this experience and the lessons learned from it. Additionally, you can take what you have learned so far this term and create recommendations for how you and others can manage this type of situation in the future.
To accomplish this, you will write a short article in our fictional journal, Complex World, to share your insights and recommendations.
How did you address the situation? How about your leader? What were the positives in the approach you and/or your leader used to address the situation?
In 2019, a Soldier approached my Chaplain and I. He told us that he was having a difficult time with his unit concerning religious accommodation. He was asking the unit to give him Basis allowance for subsistence for his meals. He claimed that he has been paying for meals out of his pocket due to his vegan status. His Command team argue that was his personal choice not to eat the meal provided to him and they could not approve his request. After couple of weeks of going back and forth, he was trying to get the Unit Ministry to vouch for him. At first, we asked him if his request was religious in nature. We could not clearly identify if it falls under religious accommodation or not. We looked in his Soldier’s record and nothing was stated in his religious preference profile. His Command argue that the dinning facility offer other food that cater to his need but he refused every effort made to resolve the issue. My Chaplain and I researched the regulation and found that his request could not be approved because being vegan did not fall into a religious category. It was determined that his decision was a personal choice. He was not happy about the decision but he was offered to eat other food at the dinning facility.
Which portion of the EEOC website might be applicable to your situation?
Even though this case was not an EEOC situation, it presented itself as one from the beginning. After initial investigation, it was determine that this case was not EEOC related. From the initial report, I believe this situation may apply to equal pay/compensation discrimination. This act requires that men and women in the same workplace be given equal pay for equal work (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2022). All forms of pay are covered by this law, including salary, overtime pay, bonuses, stock options, profit sharing and bonus plans, life insurance, vacation and holiday pay, cleaning or gasoline allowances, hotel accommodations, reimbursement for travel expenses, and benefits (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2022). At first, the Soldier made it seem like he was being discriminated against because he chose to be vegan and they wouldn’t give him the compensation he deserve. It turned out that was not the case.
What were the lessons learned?
In this case, I learned that it is best to know all the facts before jumping to conclusion. We could have opened an investigation against his Command team has we not conducted an investigation or look up the regulation.
U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (2022). Eeoc.gov. Retrieved from https://www.eeoc.gov/equal-paycompensation-discrimination
Your article should address the following:
- Give a brief, professional, objective description of the scenario you presented in the M3.3 discussion.
- Given what you have learned so far in this course, how would you handle this situation (which was the topic of your DEI experience discussion) now?
- Lastly, offer a recommendation for other professionals in your field, based upon evidence-based best practices and your experience, for handling such situations in the future. Be sure your recommendations are supported with evidence from valid and reliable sources.
For Complex World, here are the formatting requirements:
- Your article should be no fewer than 600 words and no more than 800.
- Your article should be submitted using the Complex World submission template. Download submission template.
- You have the ability to move images and headings within the template.
- Be sure to include subheadings to break up your text and walk the readers through the sections of the article.
- Lead and inline images are highly suggested. Note that images convey emotion, much like our article cover does. They also help to break up the text. Unsplash (Links to an external site.) or Pixabay (Links to an external site.) are great sources for free images.