Vulnerable Population in the Workplace

VulnerablePopulation in the Workplace


Allwork setup has some goals and objectives that drive them to exist inthe first place. Delivery of service at all places of work dependmore on the nature and characters of people within that work setup.However, there are factors that hinder proper functioning at placesof work and, hence, poor delivery of services. There are factors thatrender people susceptible to this weakness that renders employeesun-functional. These groups is said to be vulnerable to undueinfluence from other parties. To be vulnerable, employees do not havethe basic decision-making ability and instead, they are influenced bythe system or other people above them in the hierarchy. What makesthese groups vulnerable to undue influence and what are these groupsin a working setup that are unduly influenced? This essay wishes toreview some of the vulnerable groups within an organization. Also, itintends to understand the effects of such influence on theorganization performance. Finally, the essay would look at measuresthat can be implemented to mitigate some of the problems posed by thevulnerability of employees.

African-Americanmen with hypertension are one of the vulnerable population at theplaces of work. The problem of high blood pressure, or ratherhypertension is prevalent in the American culture with one on ofthree persons approximately reported having hypertension. However,African American men are reported to be more vulnerable to high bloodpressure as opposed to other races and sexes. According to thevarious studies conducted suggested that the African American was ata higher risk of conducting high blood pressure as compared to theirwhite counterparts despite being in the same health condition. Amongthe African-Americans, the disease has been described as a silentkiller because it can take a long time before it is detected in thebody. It is also among the leading killer with an average of 250,000plus death in a year in the United States (Lewis,Agodoa, Cheek, Greene, Middleton, O`Connor,&amp Disease, 2001).

Whatis more astonishing is that there is no concrete evidence as to whythe African American are at higher risk of contracting hypertensionthan their white counterparts. However, some health professionalsattribute the problem to the differences in the environment andupbringing. The difference can include the lifestyle led whichmajorly depend on the diet, and the level of exercise conducted bythese people, African-American men are more vulnerable to the diseasethan is their white counterparts and women. Why is not the same casewith African-American women yet they relatively lead the samelifestyle? This topic, therefore, remains an issue of discussion andresearch to understand the problem at is not logical to claimthat lifestyle and environmental factors are the leading cause ofthat vulnerability yet some people in the same circumstance displaycontrary conditions. Although, environmental differences could be aleading factor, it is not the only factor. More so, the factor isweak and cannot substantiate that claim to hold a meaningfuldiscussion.

Atplaces of work, these vulnerable group faces many challenges thathinder their career growth and development. Such interference withthe smooth functioning of a person makes them candidates of continuedcompromise hence, cannot make reasonable and sound decisions.Employees in formal employment opportunities are never confident withthese people and that effectively affect the morale and motivation.Production at the places of work is highly dependent on thesatisfaction of workers with their jobs. Effectively, employees whoreceive less attention and motivation from their counterparts cannotbe expected to be highly motivated. Coordination of variousoperations within the organization can be complicated due to theincreased conflict likely to be present within that work setup.Vulnerable groups could have some weakness that may hinder theirsmooth functioning, operations and judgment, but that does not meanthey are totally unable to deliver on the core objectives of thebusiness. It is not proper to discriminate these people solelybecause they have some disability that never renders inability(Blumenthal,Mort, &amp Edwards, 2008).

Sincehypertension is a condition that is never treatable by any knownmedicine, all that can be done is a specialized care to manage thatcondition. African American men are at a high risk of contractingcardiovascular diseases including acute heart failure and stroke.Following strict requirement as advised by the doctor, a patient canlive with that condition throughout their life. It is only a matterof increased vulnerability, but people with hypertension can lead asuccessful life as their white counterpart. Uncontrolled hypertensionis critical, and many body complications are encountered which makesit difficult for the hypertensive population to concentrate on theirwork. Instead, much attention is paid to managing their conditionleaving an organization in a compromised situation. Think of it thata manager with uncontrollable hypertension and is in charge of makinga strategic decision, it is very difficult to delegate someresponsibility, and that will affect the level and quality ofdecisions. Vulnerable populations are not weak in any way but theircondition can affect the rate and smooth service delivery (Thompson&amp Spacapan, 2001).

Organizationsneed to be morally and ethically responsible to all of its employee`sto create a conducive working culture, which can only be facilitatedwhen and only if all the vulnerable people are identified. AfricanAmerican has a biological condition whereby they are confirmed to berecipients of hypertension more than their white counterparts. Aresponsible organization should devise a mechanism of how to workwith the vulnerable as opposed to how to avoid the vulnerable. As anorganization, we operate in an environment and an open system. Hence,all people are the responsibility of the society. These vulnerablepopulations are part of the system and avoiding them in employmentopportunities is not beneficial. Learning how to interact and workwith them is important and morally right. Furthermore, it is againstthe law to discriminate against any person on any ground includingrace, ethnicity, culture and even religion. An organization thattakes care of its stakeholder is likely to be successful than thatwhich do not take care. This can be portrayed in the way anorganization treats the vulnerable population within the work setup.Situations that can lead to ineffectiveness of the organizationperformance following a vulnerable condition may however, be exemptedfrom the general rules. All in all, the organization need to use duediligence and understand every condition to reach a rationaledecision (Gelberg,Andersen &amp Leake, 2000).

Beingaware of a condition is important because it helps in managing thevulnerable condition to facilitate their smooth operations for thegeneral good of the organizations. An organization needs to have afunctional department that oversee implementation of the strategiesregarding fair treatment of vulnerable groups. Also, the employees ofthe organization are the primary factor that can help in successfulimplementation of the strategies. Acknowledging dynamism in humans isthe first step that would see reasonable treatment of the vulnerablegroups, people with hypertension, in general, may not be subjected tosome responsibilities that can compromise their health conditions. Assuch, the management of organizations should give responsibilitiesusing the best possible criteria to protect the vulnerablepopulation. The human resource department should also notdiscriminate an African-American person because they are vulnerableto hypertension. Instead, they should have a mechanism thatfacilitate and support their ability to function properly. Employeesshould also offer psychological support to boost the morale of thevulnerable groups. That way, the vulnerable population would be happyand work with confidence, hence, increasing productivity. Everyperson needs the other, and when the vulnerable group feelsneglected, they lose morale and motivation to continue working(Airhihenbuwa,Kumanyika, Agurs, &amp Lowe, 2005).

Aneducative program needs to be drafted that clearly acknowledge thevulnerable groups. This can include encouraging employees tocoordinate and support the vulnerable population within the worksetup and further dominating their influence. That way, they likelyfeel part and parcel of the organization. The education programshould also include guidelines that help hypertensive patients tomanage their conditions. Managing the condition reduces the cost toan organization of taking care of the employees` health careresponsibilities. Activities should be planned and perfectly executedin support of the vulnerable groups. Many a times, we have seenmarathons in major cities around the world which are started bysupporting certain initiatives like the war against cancer.Organizations should plan these outdoor activities that createawareness and raise funds in the process. The management of thevarious organizations should plan such activities starting with thelocality and later advancing on the international front.

Thevulnerable population should be identified by management and be giventhe necessary healthcare. This is what a responsible organizationdoes and neglecting the special needs of the population display anegative image of the organization in general. As earlier alongstated, an organization that is not socially responsible to its majorstakeholders is destined to fall. Failure by an organization to takecare of the needs of the vulnerable population including thehypertensive groups. It is upon management to exercise its duediligence and make an informed decision depending on the challengefacing the relevant vulnerable group to ensure the success of anorganization (Sgroi,2008).


African-Americansare among the most vulnerable groups regarding hypertension in theUnited States. At places of work, they are neglected due to theircondition, hence, compromising their ability to perform.Organizations should be responsible for these vulnerable groups andensure that they receive the relevant support necessary to offer themthe requisite support. There should be an in-depth education andawareness program that would facilitate and acknowledging the variousvulnerable groups. The education should include a structured plan forimplementing the guidelines. In the end, an organization would beable to satisfy the needs of its major stakeholders while at the sametime pursuing the organization goals and objectives. There would bereduced conflicts and facilitate fulfilling of the operation`s needs.However, due to the dynamics of vulnerable groups, it is necessaryfor management to make the suitable guidelines that suit itscircumstances.


Airhihenbuwa,C. O., Kumanyika, S., Agurs, T. D., &amp Lowe, A. (2005).Perceptions and beliefs about exercise, rest, and health amongAfrican-Americans. AmericanJournal of Health Promotion,9(6),426-429.

Blumenthal,D., Mort, E., &amp Edwards, J. (2008). The efficacy of primary carefor vulnerable population groups. HealthServices Research,30(1Pt 2), 253.

Gelberg,L., Andersen, R. M., &amp Leake, B. D. (2000). The Behavioral Modelfor Vulnerable Populations: application to medical care use andoutcomes for homeless people. Healthservices research,34(6),1273.

Lewis,J., Agodoa, L., Cheek, D., Greene, T., Middleton, J., O`Connor, D.,… &amp Disease, K. (2001). Comparison of cross-sectional renalfunction measurements in African Americans with hypertensivenephrosclerosis and of primary formulas to estimate glomerularfiltration rate. Americanjournal of kidney diseases,38(4),744-753.

Sgroi,S. (2008). Vulnerablepopulations(Vol. 2). Simon and Schuster.

Thompson,S. C., &amp Spacapan, S. (2001). Perceptions of control invulnerable populations. Journalof Social Issues,47(4),1-21.