The Coca-Cola Company’s Arbitration and Ethical Dilemma


Nowadays, large companies often have problems concerning the so-called work ethics. Former employees keep trying to sue them for discrimination because of skin color, sex, or religion. In such a case, a company faces dilemma that cannot be easily solved. However hard they try to eliminate repercussions, their reputation will be damaged after the course of scandals connected with the arbitration process. Apparently, in many cases a company’s blame is proved what makes it pay the bill. Still, there are complicated situations when a former employee is highly likely cheating by speculating facts and lying to the court. Somehow, the Coca-Cola Company has faced juridical injustice concerning an unusual racism issue and failed to solve probably the most sensational dilemma of this age.

Be Less White

Admittedly, the Coca-Cola Company has always tried to match all the current ethical tendencies. Its slogan “Be Less White” has aroused heated debates over its ethical policy (WION, 2021). It seems to be that this large company tries to stand up for African Americans and encourage coloured people work for them. Sometimes, their efforts may appear to be too radical for those who believe in positive discrimination. Meanwhile, among of the company’s employees are people of different color. This spring their behavior towards one another has caused problems to the company.

The situation turned out to be utterly ridiculous and impossible to solve. To put it in a nutshell, one of the employees used to threaten his coloured colleagues in brutal ways. After a while, he was fired with a long explanation of what he had done in the wrong way. According to that report, he hung a noose from a supervisor’s platform near an area where a person of colour usually worked at the company and used racist symbols proclaiming the rise of the South (Tricity News, 2021). It was clear that such a worker could have no position in a modern organization. This is why nobody hesitated to get rid of him as soon as possible. Moreover, nobody expected him to seize the court because of it. Meanwhile, the man decided to start a dispute and prove that his labor rights had been violated.

Time to Lose

Fortunately, National Labor Relations Board was not involved. That was a private arbitration that resulted in restoring the man in his position. As the company was faced with the dilemma – to fight till the end and lose money or give in without drastic consequences, the second variant was chosen. It is sure to be a huge moral mistake from the company’s part because they have provided racists with a precedent that lets them mistreat people of color within this particular organization. As the Coca-Cola Company remains in business, it shows a disgraceful example of money dominating moral values in society.

Nevertheless, this arbitration could have been prevented. The problem is that no sufficient evidence was prepared beforehand. Probably, the employee has lost their vigilance because people belonging to ethnical minorities usually call for justice. This is the case when a racist somehow won the process by lying to the court. In fact, he has every opportunity to do so because there were no photos of the symbols which he used and no recordings of his threatening his colleagues. If the supervisor had made such a recording, there would be not a single problem with the racist’s dismissal by now. Interestingly, the wrongdoer used to threaten his African American colleagues for a long period of time but remained uncaught.

Another problem is the future cases that the Coca-Cola Company is bound to receive after such a precedent. It turns out that African Americans will no longer tolerate that employee’s presence. They are highly likely to have battles over his racist remarks. If somebody gets wounded in such a battle, it will be the company’s blame. Its reputation will possibly never recover after revealing new-born Ku Klux Klan instead of inclusion. In addition, this particular employee may become impudent and sue the company one more time for no reason. This specific case seems to be a bomb ready to explode at any moment. Unfortunately, if there is a precedent of unpunished mistreat towards people of color and the triumph of injustice, people will learn from this situation and behave accordingly further on.


To conclude, each and every big company is likely to face many dilemmas and strange arbitrations on the long way towards inclusion and following modern ethical trends. However, an employee should be vigilant enough to fight for justice and the company’s values in case they are questioned. The Coca-Cola Company has failed to do so and shown unprecedented weakness. It remains in business and make efforts to be inclusive. However, even if this company tries to show their good attitude towards people of color, there is nothing but hypocrisy that people can see in their inconsistent actions. Indeed, they should have foreseen such a case and prepare for it. Now, there are a number of ethical problems that nay await this company because there is a precedent.


Tricity News: Coquitlam forklift operator wins case against Coca Cola after confederate flag mask worn at work. (2021). Web.

WION: Coca-Cola promotes anti-white rhetoric, invites backlash. (2021). Web.

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BusinessEssay. 2023. "The Coca-Cola Company's Arbitration and Ethical Dilemma." January 19, 2023.

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BusinessEssay. "The Coca-Cola Company's Arbitration and Ethical Dilemma." January 19, 2023.