Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Discrimination against smokers?

An Irish company issued a call for a job stating that smokers shouldn’t even bother to apply. A British MEP questioned the European Commission about the legitimacy of the provision. Commissioner Spidla answered that it doesn’t violate the European laws. Well, in my opinion, someone should inform Mr Spidla that he isn’t paid to interpret the laws, but to implement them. He can have his opinion, of course, as I have mine. Even if the European anti-discriminatory legislation doesn’t explicitly state this situation, the law in many European countries states very clearly that health-related issues can’t be used to refuse a job to someone. Many people may tend to be tolerant or even sympathetic towards this situation because of the harms caused by smoking… but how will they react when companies start to discriminate obese people, for instance? How will you react, Mr Spidla?


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