The Ethics of Not Hiring Smokers

and the Institute for Health and Social Policy and the Department of Philosophy, McGill University, Montreal (K.V.).
New England Journal of Medicine (Impact Factor: 55.87). 03/2013; 368(15). DOI: 10.1056/NEJMp1301951
Source: PubMed


Finding employment is becoming increasingly difficult for smokers. Twenty-nine U.S. states have passed legislation prohibiting employers from refusing to hire job candidates because they smoke, but 21 states have no such restrictions. Many health care organizations, such as the Cleveland Clinic and Baylor Health Care System, and some large non-health care employers, including Scotts Miracle-Gro, Union Pacific Railroad, and Alaska Airlines, now have a policy of not hiring smokers - a practice opposed by 65% of Americans, according to a 2012 poll by Harris International. We agree with those polled, believing that categorically refusing to hire smokers is unethical: it . . .

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