Okay, here’s the situation…
My friend (I’ll call him James) is on the low end of the employment pole; he has a high-school education and few job skills, but he managed to get a job working as a customer service rep for an electronics company.
Anyway, James got hit by the Bush Recession in January, and got laid off as a result. He managed to get by on unemployment while looking for a new job. In mid-March, he finally found one, working as a clerk in a hospital cafeteria to replace an outgoing employee. The pay is less than what he was previously making, the work is more physically demanding, and the hours tend to be up-at-4:00am-early-morning-shirt affairs, but hey, it beats unemployment.
Anyway, James has bee working at this new job for about two weeks now, when he gets a call from his supervisor at the previous job – they want to hire him back, can he come along? And they’ll throw in a slight pay increase to sweeten the deal.
Sooooooooo… ethically speaking, would it be right or wrong for James to drop the hospital job and go back to his old boss? Materialistically, it’s a no-brainer – the pay is better, the hours are more “normal”, the work is less exhausting, and he gets to be back with his old friends. On the other hand, the hospital has invested some time and effort to train him, and if he leaves, they’ll have to go look for someone else to fill the hole.