Last week I saw a news blurb about a company in the west that fired their employees who kept hunting guns in their trucks while at work. Doug and I had a nice long debate about such policies. We also talked about the companies who fire workers that won’t give up smoking. It was all very nice and rhetorical. Now a very family-friendly company in Knoxville who provide a service that almost all Knoxvillians use has established some new policies of their own. Keep in mind that the following are my words, not theirs and this was issued by the company’s safety department:
*No more jars of candy allowed on or in employees’ desks.
*No more than one candy bar in the employees’ workspace.
*No fast food allowed in the office. Homemade food only.
*Employees can no longer bring in bagels every Friday. They must now bring fresh fruit every other Friday.

Should employers be allowed to dictate their employees’ eating habits?

8 thoughts on “110994414068407720

  1. Employers need to mind there own business. they shouldn’t be allowed to tell their employees what they can eat and what they can’t. if i was working there i would be totally pissed!

  2. I don’t think they should be determining what people can eat. Not only is it generally dumb, but there are people out there who have allergies to certain fruits…so I guess they don’t get breakfast on Fridays…

  3. I heard on NPR this morning that Southwest Airlines puts the employee first, the customer second and the shareholder third. If a customer has an agrument with an employee SW Airlines assumes the “customer is wrong” since they make good hiring decisions and since their employees come first the employees are happy.

    I wonder if SW Air would have made the same decisions as this Knoxville company.

  4. I heard that on npr this morning too, their reasoning being that if the employee is happy, so will customers and that will led to better share holder stocks. Makes sense to me!

  5. Ok, at some point we need to draw the line. Dictating what people *do* on company time is one thing, but what they eat? WTF? And what they do in their off the clock time (provided it’s legal, and cigarettes still are!) is none of the employers business! Period! The whole smoking thing, they are doing nicotine tests. Well, obesity is just as detrimental as smoking, but they aren’t doing body fat tests. They aren’t drawing blood to see if the employee ate a Big Mac. Ugh… this is America people, remember that fun tag word we throw around? “Freedom”? Yeah… it has a MEANING!

  6. The company that fired the smoking employees was an INSURANCE company, and they needed their employees to reflect the health they expect from their consumers. It wasn’t an overnight decision, they were given a year to quit. Maybe this Knoxville company is going to a bit of an extreme, but no one can argue that their heart is not in the right place. Imagine what the cummulative effect of this policy will have on employee health, missed days from work, insurance claims… There are offices that are giving employees “walk breaks” instead of smoke breaks now. I would like to see the actually wording of their policy

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