RELIGIOUS DISCRIMINATION IN THE WORKPLACE

Religious freedom is a basic right in America. The religious discrimination lawyers at Wenzel Fenton Cabassa, P.A. lead the fight for the rights of employees across Florida against religious discrimination in the workplace. 

Your employer does not have the right to discriminate against you because of your religion. Though this sounds simple, the laws protecting your religious freedom are much broader than you might think. Religious discrimination lawyers utilize powerful laws to hold employers accountable.

First, it is important to understand what is considered religious discrimination.

WHAT IS RELIGIOUS DISCRIMINATION IN THE WORKPLACE?

Religious discrimination stems from adverse employment actions or harassment specifically due to a person’s religion. It is unlawful across the board and applies to all areas of employment – hiring, wages, training, job assignments, promotions, health insurance, etc. – anything pertaining to the employment relationship.

According to the EEOC, the law protects not only people who belong to traditional, organized religions, such as Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, and Judaism, but also others who have sincerely held religious, ethical, or moral beliefs. 

Religious discrimination cases can also be valid if there is differential treatment because that person is married to or associated with an individual of a particular religion. 

You have the right to sue your employer for religious discrimination. They will typically have their own attorneys, so it is important to consult with a religious discrimination lawyer that works on behalf of employee rights to discuss the details of your situation.

YOUR LEGAL PROTECTIONS

Freedom of religion is written into the First Amendment of the Constitution – which means the government cannot discriminate on the basis of religion. Private companies with at least 15 employees cannot discriminate on the basis of religion because it is unlawful to do so under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (often called “Title VII”).

Florida also has legislation to protect employees that religious discrimination lawyers can utilize in cases against employers who violate the law. The Florida Civil Rights Act of 1992 was passed “to secure for all individuals within the state freedom from discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, handicap, or marital status.”

A BASIC OVERVIEW

Religious Attire & Grooming

Certain hats, headdresses, or other attire that are worn due to your religious beliefs may not be prohibited. The same is true of hairstyles and facial hair. Additionally, it cannot be mandatory for you to be forced to wear clothing that is against your religious beliefs.

Modifying Employment

You have the right to receive reasonable accommodations that will allow you to be true to your religion without having to sacrifice your livelihood or be harassed. 

Accommodations may include modifications to workplace practices or policies, flexible scheduling, voluntary shift swaps, or job reassignments. These accommodations are typically lawful unless doing so would cause more than a minimal burden on the operations of the employer’s business.

For example, time off for religious holidays is your right as an American citizen.

Harassment

Harassment, including offensive remarks, taunting, and other behaviors, is illegal when it is so frequent or severe that it creates a hostile or offensive work environment or when it results in an adverse employment decision, according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. 

Examples of Religious Discrimination:

Here are some situations in which religious rights are protected on the job. You have the right to not be:

  • Discriminated against during the job application process due to your religion 
  • Being denied a promotion for being married to a person of a certain religion.
  • Being demoted or fired for affiliation with an organization that includes a religious component.
  • Withholding pay for holding any moral or ethical belief system (such as pacifism or atheism).
  • Severe and widespread bullying or harassment, including derogatory or insulting remarks by anyone in the workplace – supervisors, coworkers, and even customers.
  • Required by your employer to participate in a specific religious tradition (such as Christmas celebrations or prayers).

These are examples of unlawful behavior where discrimination lawyers can help employees in the fight for justice. The broad scope of actions considered religious discrimination cases is not fully represented in the above list. It is critical to speak to a professional to discuss the details of your situation to see if you have a case. 

Contact the Discrimination Lawyers at Wenzel Fenton Cabassa, P.A. Today

If you feel you have been discriminated against due to your religion, religious discrimination lawyers can help. We are strong advocates for the religious freedoms of employees across Florida and are dedicated to workplace justice.

Call the Wenzel Fenton Cabassa, P.A. office, or schedule your free consultation now.

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