A Boca Raton nursing facility, Menorah House, has agreed to settle a religious discrimination suit filed by two former employees afterstopped accommodating their religious needs. The two employees were Seventh-Day Adventists, who do not work from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday.
Menorah House accommodated their religious beliefs for eight years before management decided that all employees had to be available to work on Saturday regardless of their religious beliefs. When the two refused to work, they were fired.
The two complained to the EEOC, which attempted to resolve the matter through its conciliation process. Those efforts failed and the commission filed suit on the former employees’ behalf.
Rather than litigate, the employer elected to settle the matter by paying the two former employees $120,000. It will also train managers about religious discrimination and must disseminate an anti-discrimination policy throughout the company.
Note: An employer who discontinues an accommodation that is working (either religious or disability), it better have a very good reason for doing so.
- Courts say, 'Enough!': Employees must file all related claims at same time
- Make managers aware of potential personal liability
- Avoid bias against newest 'protected class'--the unemployed
- Don't let lawsuit fear stop appropriate discipline
- Lesson from the court: Never disclose former employees' medical info