What is religious discrimination?
The Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employers from discriminating against individuals on the basis of their religion in hiring, firing, promotions or other terms of employment. Employers may not treat employees or applicants less or more favorably because of their religious beliefs or practices and employees cannot be forced to participate or not participate in a religious activity as a condition of employment.
Employers must also reasonably accommodate employees’ sincerely held religious beliefs or practices unless doing so would impose an undue hardship on the employer, although the employer does not have to accommodate the employee’s religious beliefs if that accomodation would impose an undue hardship on the employer’s legitimate business interest. Employers must also permit employees to engage in religious expression if employees are permitted to engage in other forms of personal expression at work, as long as the religious expression does not impose an undue hardship on the employer. Finally, employers must take active steps to prevent religious harassment in the workplace.