Saturday, December 8, 2007

Obesity: The Next Hurdle in Human Rights?

I've been thinking lately about the obesity epidemic. I have a little sister who fits into this category and watching her grow up, facing the problems that go along with being overweight, has got me thinking. Obesity is a big problem in America, with our fast food and highway system. I really think obesity discrimination is going to be the next big thing when it comes to human rights violations in America. Already I have heard (through the grapevine and what have you) that it is a problem in corporate America. There is a glass ceiling effect taking place similar to that which used to (some may argue it still exists) affect women. I found some information on The Obesity Society's website ( that I found interesting. I really think this might be a problem that we, as PR professionals, will be dealing with in the future. I don't doubt that weight discrimination takes place in corporate America. We tend to focus on outward appearances. We like good looking people. I wonder how long it will take before weight is included in the list of things protected by equal opportunity employment. I wonder if there will ever be laws against weight discrimination. Honestly, I hope so. I would hate to think that an intelligent overweight individual wouldn't be able to get the job he or she deserves just because he or she has a little extra baggage.

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