deliberate safety violations ethical?

I just read an article suggesting that management deliberately "play dumb" and violate safety procedures to see the response of workers and supervisors.  For example, not wearing a hardhat in a mandatory area and seeing if anyone in that department says anything or intervenes by getting a hardhat, etc.

Do you think it is ethical to "set up" employees or is it justified to determine if employees are adhering to safety procedures?


  • 3 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • Good question. I think there are better ways to improve safety.  Not wearing a hardhat in a mandatory area isn't a good example to set, even as a test.  This "test" could result in serious injury or even death of a managment member. The employer is saying that it was OK to not wear a helmet because it was testing the employees, when, in fact, it is never OK to not wear a helmet in a mandatory area.

  • I say absolutely not. Management shouldn't turn a blind eye to this type of thing on purpose, one of their employee could really get hurt. I think that supervisors can point out that no one has noticed the safety violation, but i think that it crosses a line to just ignore it!
  • I think using deliberate violations is too risky.  And I think employees might feel like the company's trying to trick them.  I'll bet incentives for safety suggestions would be more effective in getting employees' attention -- with a lot less risk to the company!
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