Genetic-based Discrimination

Posted in Human Resource Terms, Total Reads: 800

Definition: Genetic-based Discrimination

Genetic-based discrimination is a type of discrimination whereby people are discriminated by their employers on the basis of genetics i.e. gene mutation which is responsible for the risk of inherited disorder. This discrimination is a common cause for fear among the people considered for genetic testing.

Hence, patients are dissuaded from participating in the test/ research necessary for the development of new drugs, therapies etc. In order to facilitate the process, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, 2008 was passed whereby there is prohibition of discrimination at work-place and by health insurance issuers.

For e.g., a person ‘D’ of native South Africa is studied to have spasms of psychological illness which is a genetic disorder in this case. Let us assume that ‘D’ is perfectly healthy and a hard-working employee. Hence, discrimination based on genetic information and termination of his employment is legally wrong and this will inhibit ‘D’ from volunteering for research to test on the genes and the mutation for therapies etc.


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