For many Florida residents, their religion may be a significant part of their lives and play a role in how they conduct themselves. As a result, some individuals may not be able to work on certain days or during certain times due to religious reasons. Unfortunately, some employees could potentially face religious discrimination in the workplace and possibly lose their jobs as a result.
Citi Brands and Food Lion are two companies that were recently named in lawsuits by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for instances of religious discrimination. The first situation took place when an employee who identified as a Seventh-day Adventist had his employment status revoked due to being unable to work between sundown on Fridays and sundown on Saturdays, which was his Sabbath. In a similar situation, a man who was a Food Lion employee was terminated from his position after his duties were changed and required him to work on Sundays, which he was unable to do as a Jehovah's Witness.
It was reported that the employers should have considered implementing accommodations for the employees, allowing them to work around their religious obligations rather than simply being terminated. It was also noted that accommodations for such situations are often not considered due to adjustments essentially being leave time. At this time, neither company named in the suits has provided comment on the situation.
Though it may seem like an inconvenience to some employers, making accommodations for employees due to religious purposes should be considered before termination. If a Florida worker is fired or otherwise treated unfairly in the workplace due to his or her religion, finding out more information on discrimination claims may be helpful. After assessing the situation closely, an employee may wish to consider taking legal action.
Source: ebn.benefitnews.com, "Dunkin Donuts, Food Lion face EEOC religious discrimination lawsuits", Michael Giardina, Sept. 16, 2014