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Chronic illness in the workplace, federal employment law, and ethical decision making in Arizona's public school systems.

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This study focuses on the intersection of chronic illness in the workplace, federal employment law, and ethical decision making by district-level administrators in Arizona's public school systems. That these workplace issues present challenges to employers, employees, and America's health care system is well documented. However, there is a dearth of research focusing on th This study focuses on the intersection of chronic illness in the workplace, federal employment law, and ethical decision making by district-level administrators in Arizona's public school systems. That these workplace issues present challenges to employers, employees, and America's health care system is well documented. However, there is a dearth of research focusing on this intersection.;This research discusses chronic illness and workplace issues faced by chronically ill employees and their employers, federal laws affecting workplace practices regarding these employees, ethics and ethical decision making, and variables that influence ethical decision making. Its intent is to provide insight to, and understanding of, the manner in which district-level administrators exercise ethical analysis and ethical decision making as they navigate within the frameworks of ADA and FMLA to determine workplace practices.;The research employed a mixed methods, exploratory design-instrument development model, using interviews in Phase One to gather qualitative data concerning the circumstances related to employees with chronic illnesses that raise ethical concerns to the decisions faced by district-level administrators and to identify attributes specific to the chronically ill employee that are associated with the ethical reasoning of district-level administrators. The data was used to create two surveys, in which participants were given five identical scenarios created around the circumstances identified during Phase One, and between which employee attributes thought to influence decision making were manipulated. One hundred twelve practicing professionals participated in the surveys. The findings challenge a commonly held notion that decisions related to determining the workplace treatment of chronically ill employees are prescribed and "by the book" and that the discretionary judgment of individual decision makers is minimal or non-existent. Rather, the findings demonstrate that both employee attributes and decision maker attributes affect ethical reasoning and ethical decision making.


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This study focuses on the intersection of chronic illness in the workplace, federal employment law, and ethical decision making by district-level administrators in Arizona's public school systems. That these workplace issues present challenges to employers, employees, and America's health care system is well documented. However, there is a dearth of research focusing on th This study focuses on the intersection of chronic illness in the workplace, federal employment law, and ethical decision making by district-level administrators in Arizona's public school systems. That these workplace issues present challenges to employers, employees, and America's health care system is well documented. However, there is a dearth of research focusing on this intersection.;This research discusses chronic illness and workplace issues faced by chronically ill employees and their employers, federal laws affecting workplace practices regarding these employees, ethics and ethical decision making, and variables that influence ethical decision making. Its intent is to provide insight to, and understanding of, the manner in which district-level administrators exercise ethical analysis and ethical decision making as they navigate within the frameworks of ADA and FMLA to determine workplace practices.;The research employed a mixed methods, exploratory design-instrument development model, using interviews in Phase One to gather qualitative data concerning the circumstances related to employees with chronic illnesses that raise ethical concerns to the decisions faced by district-level administrators and to identify attributes specific to the chronically ill employee that are associated with the ethical reasoning of district-level administrators. The data was used to create two surveys, in which participants were given five identical scenarios created around the circumstances identified during Phase One, and between which employee attributes thought to influence decision making were manipulated. One hundred twelve practicing professionals participated in the surveys. The findings challenge a commonly held notion that decisions related to determining the workplace treatment of chronically ill employees are prescribed and "by the book" and that the discretionary judgment of individual decision makers is minimal or non-existent. Rather, the findings demonstrate that both employee attributes and decision maker attributes affect ethical reasoning and ethical decision making.

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