Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Reasonable Accommodations

Religious discrimination just like any other form of discrimination is rising. Religious practices and beliefs often become source of disagreement between employers and employees.

revealed that in fiscal year 2006, it received 2,541 charges of religious discrimination. Out of them, a total of 2,387 charges were resolved and approximately $5.7 million were recovered in monetary benefits for accusing parties and other aggrieved individuals.

It is a fundamental right of every person to have her or his religion respected. Hence, the law gives employees the right to have their religious needs accommodated by the employer. For instance, an employee shall be given a time in a day to pray or a certain day off to attend to religious obligations.

On the other hand, the employers could not also make decisions which greatly depend on the employees’ religious beliefs. Religious accommodations would be set aside if it would entail prejudice and harm to the business or company.

Apparently, a contradiction exists. As an employer, you must give preference to these accommodations. However, if accommodating these religious practices would mean causing morale problems or other serious concerns then it may be set aside.

The gauge is this; an employer must have room for employees’ religious accommodations or give preference, at least. These reasonable accommodations are not only legally imposed but also morally encouraged. Otherwise, the employer shall be open to religious discrimination cases.