EEOC offers new guidelines for avoiding religious discrimination

the guidelines do not provide more information about what actually does constitute hardship for employers. Employers are also not allowed to require someone to cover up religious clothing or behaviors, or be placed in non-customer-facing jobs because of perceived or real customer bias. The EEOC clarified that one’s religious adherence and practices may evolve over time, and that if specific grooming habits or garments are simply personal preference and not worn for religious purposes, that behavior is not protected under the Civil Rights Act. Due to these new guidelines, it is expected that employers will see an upswing in EEOC religious discrimination litigation in the coming months. Last month, the EEOC underwent a hearing before the House of Representatives to determine whether a previous guidance report that was released in 2012 has allowed the Commission to overstep its bounds. Information on that hearing has not been updated since June 10th.]]>

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