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Brush up religious-bias policy; workplace getting more diverse

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in Discrimination and Harassment,HR Management,Human Resources,Leaders & Managers,Management Training

More than a third of HR professionals say their work force includes more religions than just five years ago, according to a new survey from

the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). This fact, coupled with a steady rise in religious discrimination complaints, shows the need for a company policy on religious tolerance.

Title VII requires employers to reasonably accommodate workers' religious beliefs unless it creates an undue hardship for the company. The SHRM survey said the most commonly requested religious accommodations include decorating office space for religious holidays (55 percent) and flexible scheduling for religious observances (36 percent).

While employees want written policies on religious holiday leave, only 22 percent of the employers have them. Also, only 28 percent allow employees to swap holidays (for example, working on Christmas to take Yom Kippur as a holiday).

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