Ozarks Electric Pays $95,000 To Settle Religious Discrimination Lawsuit
Ozarks Electric pays $95,000 to a former employee to settle a religious discrimination lawsuit. The employment discrimination lawsuit was filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") on behalf of the employee. According to published accounts Ozarks failed to provide an employee with a reasonable religious accommodation and then fired her because of her religious beliefs. Under the law, an employer must provide a reasonable accommodation based on someones religious beliefs. What is reasonable is determined by the Judge on a case-by-case basis.
In this case Ozarks denied the employee a requested day off to attend a Jehovah's Witness convention and then terminated her when she chose to attend the convention rather than report to work. In this case what the company did is clearly a violation of the law. Asking for one day off for religious purposes would certainly be a valid and reasonable request. And you can see how much money this ended up costing the company. Better training on discrimination would help this company.
"Employees are faced with many choices throughout their careers, but having to choose between their religion and their work should never be one of those choices." Said EEOC Attorney Faye Williams