Burlington Northern Railroad & Santa Fe Railway Company (Bnsf)

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TUI UNIVERSITY Andrew C. Hubbert ETH 501 – Business Ethics Module III – Case Study BNSF Genetic Testing Dr. John Malpass The purpose of this case study is to justify the fairness of the court settlement between the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Burlington Northern Railroad & Santa Fe Railway Company (BNSF). Burlington Northern did willingly and knowingly breach employee personal privacy, as well as the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) in conducting unauthorized genetic blood testing on unknowing employees. The court mandate that they pay $2.2 million to 36 employees is fair and just. To illustrate the fairness of the settlement, I will show the utilitarian perspective from…show more content…
In this case, the employees consented to generalized medical examination and not to the detailed blood tests. Employers do maintain certain rights to invade to privacy of their employees. Safety is a prime example. In the interest of safety, it is the employer’s deontological responsibility to provide a safe workplace. Alcohol and drug use on the job would create hazards in the workplace. Testing employees for drugs is not only written in the contract, but also is in the best interest of all parties involved, including fellow employees. However, it is the employer’s responsibility to use the least obtrusive method to obtain their desired results and must also protect the worker’s best interest. During the course of their testing, Burlington Northern did not disclose the additional tests to their workers and therefore, broke this rule. Their determination to keep the results secret broke the simply rules of a employee contract by not protecting the interest of their employee. Previous established research indicated that the test they were performing was not conclusive on the pre-cursor to CTS. Though Burlington does not admit it, we can only assume that this data was to be used in determining the medical benefits payouts towards the workers that filed claims. The reduced medical benefits payouts would have been based around improper tests, which are known to be inaccurate in their

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