EEOC issues guidelines on accepting employees’ religious garb, grooming
March 10, 2014
The United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has released new guidelines on religious garb and grooming in the workplace.
Under the guidelines, Christians who choose to wear a cross, or members of other religions who wear religious garb, may not be subject to “job segregation” (i.e., “assigning an employee to a non-customer contact position”), retaliation, or harassment.
“In most instances, employers covered by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 must make exceptions to their usual rules or preferences to permit applicants and employees to follow religious dress and grooming practices,” the guidelines state.
The guidelines continue:
Examples of religious dress and grooming practices may include: wearing religious clothing or articles (e.g., a Christian cross, a Muslim hijab (headscarf), a Sikh turban, a Sikh kirpan (symbolic miniature sword)); observing a religious prohibition against wearing certain garments (e.g., a Muslim, Pentecostal Christian, or Orthodox Jewish woman's practice of wearing modest clothing, and of not wearing pants or short skirts); or adhering to shaving or hair length observances (e.g., Sikh uncut hair and beard, Rastafarian dreadlocks, or Jewish peyes (sidelocks)).
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- EEOC Issues New Publications on Religious Garb and Grooming in the Workplace (EEOC)
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