Based on the polls, both before reading the course materials and after, there is one noticeable change. This change is on the second question asking if what the employers will do is legal or not. I would not change my reply to the first question but I think I will agree with the second by saying that it may not be illegal for employers to do such things, or have such policies in their company.
Just as Anne brilliantly deducted after some digging, I also could hardly find sufficient multi-layer proof of laws that prohibit employers making their staff to spend for the ‘betterment' of the company bona fide. I will disagree with this policy if I were part of the staff that was told to do so. No one, or rather, not many will willingly do such things for the company on their own expense. They will respond with a more positive note if promises of a bonus or some sort off benefit will come from the company. Something like "but your own i-phone and the services related to it, and get an extra seat (or two) in the annual company dinner" sort of thing. This way, the employer will still ‘save' more on company expenses compared to saving a lot but losing its staff in the long term. Therefore the staff cannot take legal action against the employer on this matter, but may opt to leave the job if they are not satisfied. On the other side of the coin, the employer cannot be a jerk or moron taking advantage of his staff just because so far, he is legally allowed to do so. I agree with Anne that the company must have such policies or change in policies clean and clear so that there will not be any chances of legal action, one against another, as well as headaches for the HR team.
Regarding the issue at hand, I will first ask the top brass if such a move or decision was really, really necessary and that whether they have thought of the repercussions of such and such a decision upon the workforce. If I get the notion that their decision(s) or policies are for mere selfish purposes, I will do what I can in my position to advice them against it. Otherwise, if it is indeed good for the company and everyone onboard, including the stakeholders and our CSR, I will use such to persuade the staff or anyone with an issue with the new ruling to comply. There is no need for legal advice here because the direction taken by the new decision is right, in the interests of the company's mission, and it is legal in the eyes of the law.
If the decision were the former, it is a clearer situation that will need the services of a legal adviser. Perhaps the legal adviser will also advise the top brass against their decision. If allowed to continue any further, the company will see an onslaught of lawsuits, resignation letters, pressure calls from unions, as well as unnecessary spending on legal expenses.