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When The Customer Is King: Employment Discrimination As Customer Service, Lu-In Wang
Employers profit from giving customers opportunities to discriminate against service workers. Employment discrimination law should not, but in many ways does, allow them to get away with it. Employers are driven by self-interest to please customers, whose satisfaction is critical to business success and survival. Pleasing customers often involves cultivating and catering to their discriminatory expectations with respect to customer service — including facilitating customers’ direct discrimination against workers.
Current doctrine allows employers to escape responsibility for customers’ discrimination against workers because it takes an overly narrow view of the employment relationship. The doctrine focuses on the formal lines of authority ...