Kansas City Religious Discrimination Attorney
According to both federal and state laws, all employees in Missouri can enjoy their freedom of religion, which means that they are legally guaranteed a non-hostile work environment. As such, discriminating against an employee because of his/her religious beliefs is illegal, and employers must accommodate their employees’ religious needs as long as those needs are reasonable.
Unfortunately, religious discrimination still occurs in some Kansas City workplaces, and if you or a loved one was the victim of religious discrimination, you need to call the leading Kansas City religious discrimination attorneys at Popham Law. Our attorneys boast years of experience in MO employment legal issues, and we are prepared to give your case the legal representation that it deserves.
For a free consultation with our employment law attorneys, call Popham Law today at (816) 221-2288 or toll-free at (844) 243-2288.
Overview of MO Religious Discrimination Law
In short, religious discrimination involves the unfavorable treatment of certain employees based on their religious beliefs. And according to the Missouri Human Rights Act (MHRA), it is unlawful for employers to engage in the following conduct:
- Refuse to hire, terminate, or discriminate in the compensation, terms, benefits, conditions, or privileges of employment
- Limit, segregate, or classify employees
- Print or circulate any statement or advertisement for employment expressing any limitation, specification, or discrimination because of religion
Furthermore, an employee cannot be forced to participate or not participate in a religious activity as a condition of employment. And if your employer sees or is notified about religious discrimination or harassment occurring in the workplace, your employer is legally obliged to take steps to prevent religious harassment and discrimination of his/her employees.
Examples of Religious Discrimination in the Workplace
There are countless ways that religious discrimination can occur in the workplace, and although most instances of discrimination are evident, some cases can be quite subtle and difficult to prove. For instance, if you’re a Muslim woman and you wear a headscarf, did the employer refuse to hire you because you’re a Muslim (religious discrimination) or because you didn’t have the necessary job qualifications?
In the example above, you would be able to distinguish honest hiring practices from religious discrimination by listening to the employer’s questions during the interview. If there were several questions regarding your religion, there’s a possibility that you were refused employment because of your religious beliefs (questions like, “Will you wear that headscarf at work?” “Will you need to pray five times a day?” etc).
Religious discrimination works both ways as well. As an employer, you cannot promote an individual just because he/she is Jewish; you can’t refuse to hire someone because he/she is Christian, and you cannot allow hostile and harassing remarks in the workplace that target Sikh individuals, and so on.
Reasonable Accommodation for Religious Beliefs
In addition to preventing religious discrimination and harassment, Kansas City employers must also make reasonable accommodations for their employees’ religious beliefs. This is a fairly contentious part of the law, as “reasonable accommodation” is not a specific, straightforward legal phrase.
However, a reasonable accommodation could include allowing time off for an employee to attend a religious ceremony or allowing tolerance in the workplace dress code for a particular religious-based appearance or dress.
An employer is exempt from reasonable accommodation if he/she can show undue hardship. Some examples of undue hardship may include violations of a seniority system; causing a lack in necessary staff; or jeopardizing security and/or health.
Contact an Experienced Employment Law Attorney in Kansas City
Religious discrimination is a very serious issue in Kansas City workplaces, and if you or another individual was the victim of continuous harassment and discrimination, it is critical to speak up. Our employment attorneys boast the resources and legal know-how to give you a strong case backed by thorough evidence. We will go the extra mile with the goal of proving that discrimination occurred, holding the responsible individual(s) accountable, and making sure that you receive justice. For a free, no-obligation consultation with our attorneys, call our Kansas City law firm today at (816) 221-2288 or toll-free at (844) 243-2288.