Religious Discrimination

Religious discrimination is treating individuals differently in their employment because of their religion, their religious beliefs and practices, and/or their request for accommodation (a change in a workplace rule or policy) of their religious beliefs and practices. It also includes treating individuals differently in their employment because of their lack of religious belief or practice. If you have been rejected for employment, fired, harassed or otherwise harmed in your employment because of your religion, your religious beliefs and practices, and/or your request for accommodation of their religious beliefs and practices, you may have suffered unlawful religious discrimination.

Some workers experiencing religious discrimination may also experience other forms of illegal discrimination as well, such as national origin discrimination, immigration/citizenship status discrimination, and/or race discrimination. Here are some examples of potentially unlawful religious discrimination:

  • Hiring / firing / promotion: Refusing to hire an employee because he or she is a Seventh-Day Adventist or Orthodox Jew and observes a Saturday Sabbath; firing an employee after he or she misses work to observe a religious holiday; promoting an employee only if she is willing to attend church regularly; transferring an employee to a position with less public contact because he is a Rastafarian who wears dreadlocks; not giving an employee a raise until he stops discussing religious beliefs with other employees during free time such as breaks or lunch.
  • Harassment: Making fun of employees or telling them they are violating the company’s dress code because they wear religious clothing such as yarmulkes, turbans, or hijabs (head scarves); repeatedly mocking a person because of his or her strong, Christian beliefs; ridiculing a Muslim employee for refusing pork at a company picnic; making efforts repeatedly to “save the soul” of a fellow employee who is an atheist.
  • Failure to accommodate: Requiring an employee to work on his Sunday Sabbath, even though other employees are willing to trade shifts with him; forcing an employee to remove her hijab (scarf) to comply with the company’s dress code even though other employees wear baseball caps on the job; not allowing employees to display religious icons or other expressions of religious belief in their work spaces, although employees are allowed to display other types of personal items.

If you have been subject to religious discrimination at your job, contact Freiman Law at (310) 917-1024 or via the form on the right for a free consultation and case evaluation.