Anti-discrimination Laws as Relates to Employment – Vacancy Announcement

Vacancy Announcement – Administrative Assistant

Job Description:

The Administrative Assistant under the leadership of the department team leader will providesupport services that must be accurate, consistent and of high quality. The Administrative Assistant will work closely with the Administrative Associate, the Programme Assistants, and the Regional advisors.

Description of the job duties:

  • Provide support in management of assets and maintenance of the office
    • Maintain staff records and calendars for members of the department
    • Maintain the department’s office inventory records and administrative files
  • Provide support in the analysis and management of the department’s portfolio
    • Ensure that the department’s portfolio is maintained and always up-to-date
    • Translation of simple correspondences whenever the need arises
  • Provide support to activities around building and sharing knowledge
    • Participate in the training of department staff on administration matters
    • Contribute appropriately to communities of practice and other knowledge networks
  • Coordinate the department’s procurement processes in accordance with the company’s rules and regulations
    • Ensure the department complies fully with the policies, strategies, regulations, and rules of the organization.
    • Prepare requisition forms, proposals, and bids including their preliminary evaluation, and purchase orders.
  • Provide support to logistical and administrative services
    • Make travel arrangements, prepare travel authorizations, and make hotel reservations for the department’s travel activities.
    • Give administrative assistance in the preparation of meetings, workshops and conferences
  • Perform any other duties under the instruction of the supervisor that relate to the objectives of the department

Description of the minimum qualifications:

The incumbent must be in possession of a high school diploma. An administration certification would be highly desirable. A university degree in Social Sciences, Business Administration, or Public Administration is not a requirement but will be an added advantage.

This Organization is committed to the achievement of cultural, nationality and gender diversity in the workplace. Applications from persons with disabilities and applicants from minority groups are equally encouraged.

Ten Illegal Questions that must not be asked in the interview

  1. What is your country of origin?

One’s national origin may be used a basis for discrimination and cause an applicant to be denied the opportunity to work. This question should not be asked and an interviewer should only aim to know whether the applicant has authorization to work in the country (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2009).

  1. Is English your first language?

A language proficiency test or question would be a better approach to finding out the languages read, written, or spoken fluently; otherwise, this question is lawfully wrong in that it has the potential to reveal one’s country of origin, which is possible grounds for discrimination and is thus prohibited by anti-discrimination law.

  1. Are you married?

It is legally wrong to seek information about one’s marital status if it has nothing to do with the nature of their job (Bloch, 1994). This question has the potential to make assumptions about a candidate’s level of commitment.

  1. Do you observe any religious holidays?

This loaded question harbors a secret agenda such as the need to identify the candidate with a certain religion, and does not have a genuine bearing on the candidate’s ability to perform the duties of the job for which they are being interviewed.

  1. Do you have children?

This question has been used to deny people; especially women, the opportunity to work, and is thus considered an illegal factor to base an employment decision.Whether a candidate has the time or commitment to meet their work obligations should not be implied from the fact that they have or intend to have children.

  1. How old are you?

This question is especially notorious when it applies to people who are over forty years of age. Ageism is illegal and discriminatory in nature, as it makes assumptions on issues like when one is likely to retire and how many years they are likely to give in service to the potential employer (Rabin-Margalioth, 2003).

  1. Are you a social drinker?

This question seeking to find out an individual’s drinking habits may disclose whether the applicant is a recovering alcoholic, however, according to Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the treatment of alcoholism is protected alongside any other disability information and should not be asked (Feldblum, 2000).

  1. Might you have any outstanding debt?

Unless this question has a direct impact on the applicant’s capability to perform the job they are being interviewed for, this question stands to reveal the applicant’s credit history, which is protected by the federal discrimination laws, permission by the employer is required if this question is to be asked.

  1. Have you ever been arrested?

Since charges can dropped or lessened and cases can be dismissed without a conviction, it is irrelevant during an interview to ask whether a candidate has ever been arrested.

  1. How often are you deployed for your Army Reserve training exercises?

The candidate’s ability to work is not compromised by their active duty service or membership in the military.

Questions aimed at revealing gender, race, age, religion, sexual orientation, or marital status are illegal since in accordance with the Civil Rights Act, they are discriminating based on these protected categories; citizenship, marital status, veteran status, disability, age, gender, color, race, ethnicity, religion and national origin (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2009).


Ten Legal Questions that may be asked during the interview

  • Are you legally authorized to work full-time in the U.S.?

This question directly affects the candidate’s right and ability to work and is therefore necessary to ask in the job interview since the employer is also obligated to comply with country’s laws on who is eligible to work there.

  • Are you willing to relocate?

This is a relevant question since it has a direct impact to the requirements of the job the interview is being conducted.

  • Have you attained the required and legal working age?

This question is safe as it does not seek personal information but aims comply with employment regulations, requiring an employer not to employ minors.

  • Are you able to execute the primary functions of this position without accommodation?

This question seeks any clarification on the whether the candidate may have any reason that may hinder their ability to execute the mandate of the job they are seeking to perform without necessarily asking about any disability they may have (Feldblum, 2000).

  • How many hours can you work?

This direct question genuinely seeks to know how much time the prospective employee is willing to commit to the position for which they are being interviewed.

  • Do you have other commitments that may hinder you from job related travelling?

This question is directly linked to the requirements of the job and does not probe or seek to gather information regarding thecandidate’s personal information such as family or marital status, in order to judge their availability to work.

  • What are the languages you read write and speak fluently?

This question has work-related relevance as it seeks to find out the communication capabilities of the candidate.

  • Have you ever been convicted of a crime?

Depending on the nature and the severity of the crime in relation to how it may affect their work, the employer may use his discretion to use the information to make a prudent hiring decision.

  • During your stint at the military, what kind of work experience, training, or education did you receive?

This is a direct way of finding out what qualifies the candidate for the job without breaching legally protected information.

  • Are you suing any illegal drugs, currently?

This is useful information to the employer as it can be used to determine a suitable candidate for the job.


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