Despite the constitutional right to freedom of religion and courts’ recognition of other forms of discrimination, courts did not accord religious discrimination claims similar treatment until fairly recently. As shocking as it may seem, certain employers are still reluctant to requests for accommodations to observe religious holidays and/or practices, such as an employee’s request not to work on Saturdays to observe the Sabbath.
If your employer refuses to recognize accommodations that do not unduly interfere with the workplace environment, you should call Sethi & Mazaheri to discuss your religious discrimination claim.
What is Religious Discrimination?
Religious discrimination occurs when an individual’s employment is negatively impacted due to their religious beliefs. Even if the religious belief is not mainstream or organized, the law requires employers to accommodate such beliefs. Employers must also refrain from segregating employees due to their religious garb or grooming.
Examples of religious discrimination include requiring an employee to participate in a religious activity, imposing stringent requirements on employees of a certain religion, or even imposing different work requirements on certain employees due to their religious beliefs.
What Sorts of Accommodations Are Required?
Employers are not only required to treat their employees the same despite their religious beliefs, but also to accommodate their employees’ religious beliefs and practices as long as they do not constitute an undue hardship, compromise safety, or are not cost effective. Such accommodations include, but are not limited to, not scheduling an employee to work on their religious holiday(s) and permitting employees to wear religious garments to work.
Individuals may file religious discrimination claims if:
They have been denied customer contact due to their religious garments,
They have been fired because they missed a day of work due to the observance of a religious holiday,
They have been subjected to offensive remarks about their religion and its members,
They are not allowed to observe their religious practices or beliefs
When Should I File My Religious Discrimination Claim?
The EEOC generally requires an individual to file a complaint within 180 days of the most recent discriminatory act. Federal employees must contact an EEOC counselor within 45 days of the most recent discriminatory act.
If your employer has treated you differently or refused to allow you to observe your religious holidays and/or practices, you should contact us immediately at 646-397-1287 to discuss your religious discrimination claim.
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