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Pennsylvania & New Jersey
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Religious discrimination occurs whenever an employer treats an employee or applicant unfavorably because of their religious beliefs.
Religious discrimination in the workplace is illegal under federal, state, and local law. The federal law that protects employees from religious discrimination is Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII protects not only people who belong to traditional, organized religions, such as Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, and Judaism, but also others who have sincerely held religious, ethical, or moral beliefs. If you were the victim of discrimination because of your religious beliefs and practices, you may have suffered unlawful religious discrimination.
Unless it would be an undue hardship on the employer’s operation of its business, an employer must reasonably accommodate an employee’s religious beliefs or practices. This applies not only to schedule changes or leave for religious observances, but also to such things as dress or grooming practices that an employee has for religious reasons. These might include, for example, wearing particular head coverings or other religious dress (such as a Jewish yarmulke or a Muslim headscarf), or wearing certain hairstyles or facial hair (such as Rastafarian dreadlocks or Sikh uncut hair and beard). It also includes an employee’s observance of a religious prohibition against wearing certain garments (such as pants or miniskirts).
When an employee or applicant needs a dress or grooming accommodation for religious reasons, they should notify their employer that they need such an accommodation for religious reasons. If the employer reasonably needs more information, the employer and the employee should engage in an interactive process to discuss the request. If it would not pose an undue hardship, the employer must grant the accommodation.
If you believe your religious rights are being violated, you should contact the Law Offices of Eric A. Shore, P.C. and speak with an experienced attorney.