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Supreme Court Rules for EEOC in Religious Accommodation Case

6.2.15

Andrew Hoag was quoted in SHRM on June 2, 2015. The article “Supreme Court Rules for EEOC in Religious Accommodation Case” discussed the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC)  significant victory on June 1, 2015, for those alleging religious discrimination in a hiring case that involved retailer Abercrombie & Fitch’s refusal to hire an applicant whose headscarf, worn for religious reasons, did not conform to its dress code policy.

Andrew was quoted on the significance of this ruling.

The decision means that HR professionals should become especially familiar with their policies and discuss them with applicants to see if an accommodation might be needed, according to Andrew.

Employers shouldn’t ask job applicants directly if they are wearing attire for religious reasons, Andrew said. But HR—or anyone else interviewing job candidates—should know their company's policies, including dress codes, and be ready to ask job applicants if those policies might be problematic for them, he added.

Don’t trade one lawsuit for another by asking, for example, if a headscarf is being worn for religious reasons, Hoag cautioned. A fine line must be walked in these discussions, and an inquiry of this kind might raise a religious discrimination lawsuit of its own, he said.

To read the full article, please visit SHRM.

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