Forms Of Religious Discrimination In The Workplace & Your Rights

Various religions have existed for thousands of years, but somehow we still see workplace discrimination take place based on religion. Even in today’s date, people are not as accepting of other religions as they should be. They may treat certain people differently in the workplace because of their beliefs, affecting the victims’ mental health and performance at the job. 

Workplace discrimination can come from your employer as well as your co-workers. Sometimes you can be facing discrimination and not be aware of it because of your lack of legal knowledge. If you feel you are being denied religious rights in the workplace, consult with Connecticut employment law attorneys to seek justice. 

Forms of religious discrimination in the workplace

  • Discrimination in hiring and firing of employees:

Hiring and firing employees based on their religious faith or level of faith falls under discrimination. These may include the following scenarios. 

  • Hiring and favoring employees with the same religious belief.
  • Terminating an employee for following a certain belief system.
  • Firing an employee to take leave for a religious event.
  • Stopping promotion:

If your employer refuses to give you a promotion because you offer your daily prayers in the workplace, it is a sign of discrimination. If you have a good work record and your employer is promoting someone less worthy, it means they are disregarding your capabilities because of your religious practices. 

  • Harassment:

Harassments can be physical, verbal, or emotional. Minor teasing can be ignored once in a while; however, when harassment becomes so severe that it creates a hostile work environment, you may need to take action. 

  • Failure to accommodate:

An employer is required to make suitable accommodations based on the employee’s religion. For example, some religious faiths wear certain kinds of clothing, not shaving their beard, displaying religious icons, and performing timely prayers. If your employer fails to accommodate such things, it is a sign of discrimination. 

  • Lower compensation:

Receiving a lesser amount of compensation and other benefits can also be a sign of discrimination. You may see your co-workers getting paid vacations and bonuses, and you may not be receiving the same. 

How to get help when faced with religious discrimination in the workplace?

When you are faced with religious discrimination, before complaining, first make sure that the action was indeed an act of discrimination. For example, someone not agreeing with your belief system is not religious discrimination. 

After you are sure, reach out to your employer and explain the situation. It will help if you gather the evidence before filing the complaint. If your employer fails to take appropriate actions to correct the situation, or if they are the ones to discriminate against you, you can file an EEOC charge and further take legal actions with the help of an attorney.