Silkwood took a big risk when she decided to blow the whistle on Kerr-McGee in 1946 for health and safety violations. Silkwood was concerned about her and her coworkers’ health and safety as she witnessed various health and safety violation acts that management ignored. Whistle blowing can be very dangerous for the one that is blowing the whistle as witnessed by the mysterious death of Karen Silkwood on the night of November 13th.
Up until her job with Kerr – McGee, Silkwood lived a normal life and didn’t do anything in her life to make her stand out. It wasn’t until her investigation began, that Silkwood was starting to become more noticeable. According to friends that were close to her, Silkwood became more and more involved in the investigation and wouldn’t let the investigation go until all evidence and facts had been reported. However, Silkwood’s evidence and findings never did make it to the appropriate people due to the mysterious car crash that led to her death.
Officers and scene investigators never did find the manila envelope containing the evidence, but Silkwood’s death brought to light the seriousness of the investigation and eventually, the closing of the Kerr-McGee Cimarron plant where Silkwood was last employed. While there are many rewards to whistle blowing, there are also many risks to whistle blowing as well. One of the rewards of whistle blowing is that the laws or acts being violated will be corrected by the correct regulation agencies.
Whistleblowers are even able to submit a confidential report online through National Whistleblowers Center website where attorneys review the information and give advice on the best ways to proceed with the investigation. There are also information and additional resources available for those who are thinking about blowing the whistle on their company. A risk of whistleblowing on the company can lead to alienation between the whistleblower and their employer, boss, and co-workers. Some may fear retaliation if seen helping those gain evidence against the company or organization practicing unethical practices.
They may also lose their job by blowing the whistle and family and friends may also be affected by the act as well because of their relationship to the whistleblower. As employees, it is our responsibility to protect the company or organization values while at the same time, also following our own moral values as well. Every company and organization has their own morals and values that they established, but if an employee witnesses or comes across evidence that does not uphold those values, than the employee has a responsibility to report those unethical practices.
Employees also have their own person moral values that they usually use as standards when finding a company or organization to work for. When dealing with unethical practices, an employee bases their decision to report the company against their own personal moral values. It is than the employee’s responsibility to make that tough decision on reporting their company’s unethical practices and risking everything or leaving it up to someone else to make that decision. References Karen Silkwood. (2013). The Biography Channel website. Retrieved 05:47, Apr 28, 2013, from http://www. biography. com/people/karen-silkwood-9542402.