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3 iStockphoto/Thinkstock Socioeconomic Trends and the Workforce Chapter Contents 3.1 What Is a Socioeconomic Trend?

Here are several events that happen in the workplace. Do you believe they fall under the definition of sexual harassment? If so, why? If not, why not?

~ Jane willingly dated a co-worker for the last 3 years. Now, she has met someone else and does not want to continue the relationship with the co-worker. The co-worker does not want to end the relationship and is posting negative things about her on Facebook.

~ Linda offers sexual favors to her professor in order to get a passing grade. The professor agrees, and Linda receives a passing grade.

~Mary, a supervisor, asks her male employee, Stan, to join her for dinner so they have will some quiet time away from the office to go over his performance evaluation.

~ Bob, a supervisor, makes comments about on a regular basis to his secretary, Susan, about how she is dressed for the day.

~ A customer in a restaurant grabs the rear end of a waitress. She complains about the customer to the manager, who says, “Ignore it, you’ll probably get bigger tip.”

~Don posts pictures of scantily clothed women on his office walls.
3.1 What Is a Socioeconomic Trend? 3.2 Responses to Trends That Afect the Workplace 3.3 Racism in the Workplace 3.4 Educa±on and Literacy 3.5 Women and the Workplace 3.6 People with Disabili±es and the Workplace 3.7 The Aging WorkForce 3.8 Substance Abuse and the Workplace 3.9 Stress and Mental Illness and the Workplace 3.10 The 21st-Century Worker Case Study: Invisible But Injurious: The New ²ace oF Workplace Discrimina±on Chapter Contents
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CHAPTER 3 Prologue Prologue Harvard sociologist Daniel Bell (1919–2011) envisioned postindustrial society as reflect- ing ongoing changes within society as well as the workplace. Bell’s vision of an economy dependent on information and technology has been realized, and the workplace and workers have transformed many times over the past century. Chapter 3 examines specific socioeconomic trends, responses to them, and changes to the composition of the modern workforce as well as the social experience of work. 3.1 What Is a Socioeconomic Trend? I t is generally assumed that the personal characteristics and circumstances of workers such as education, gender, class, race, ethnicity, and nationality will determine their prospects of find- ing work, the quality of their job, and lifelong earnings and retirement funds. These outcomes subsequently affect the quality of life for workers and their families. Personal circumstances, how- ever, represent only a part of what determines a worker’s position. Socioeconomic trends also play a significant role. Socioeconomic trends are external forces that affect the nature of the workplace. The combina- tion of several forces determines an individual’s access to employment, type of job, and social experience of work. Socioeconomic trends include: demographic changes in the workforce conditions of local and global economies technological advances conditions of particular industries (boom, stabilization, or decline) political and legal frameworks affecting labor relations values of dominant culture Socioeconomic trends are systemic , causing inequalities in access to education, health services, and employment. These factors contribute to a profile of the disadvantaged who may become caught in a cycle of poverty. Long-term unemployment leads to poverty, which hinders access to education, health services, and employment opportunities, completing the cycle. Social stratifica- tion that is embedded in society causes inequalities to be institutionalized , meaning that social institutions actually promote and maintain circumstances that support a cycle of poverty. Factors That Affect Socioeconomic Trends Socioeconomic trends are influenced by four types of external forces: demographic, market, tech- nological, and legislative. Demographic trends include the numbers of women in the workforce and workers’ age, educational level, and racial and ethnic background. Demographic trends determine one’s
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A form of sex discrimination is actually what is known as sexual harassment. But it has
got a specific legal definition which states denote it as an “ unwelcome verbal, visual, or

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