I just heard this on All Things Considered a few minutes ago. Basically, this company requires all of its employees to be smoke-free in a year or they're fired (or they can resign). The company has good reasons for this: employees who smoke drive up health care costs. The company offers to pay for programs and supplies to help quit smoking. But, if after a year you test positive to random nicotene tests... you're outta there.
What are your thoughts on this? Is this a reasonable attempt by a company to 1)reduce costs, and 2)protect their employees? I agree that it's legal. We have laws protecting people from being fired/not hired due to race, ethnicity, gender, and even alcoholism (per the ADA, as long as it doesn't affect work performance), but stuff like this (private behavior) is out in the open. (Some states do have laws protecting from discrim. based on lifestyle, which would include things like this.)
Should companies be able to regulate private behavior? Can we not hire people because they eat junk food, engage in risky hobbies (motorcycling, parachuting), don't practice safe sex, etc? To what extent is this "okay" for companies to do?
Where would we draw the line? Any thoughts?