Businesses and employers cannot discriminate against workers — or potential workers — on the basis of the worker’s religious belief system in the United States. By virtue of the First Amendment, one of the primary principles of the United States is protection from religious discrimination. This is largely because the original founders of the United States had suffered from religious persecution in Europe, leading to escape to the “New World” where they could enjoy a freer life.
In addition to the right of the general population to live free of religious persecution in the United States, U.S. workers also enjoy protection from religious-based employment discrimination under Title VII of the Civil rights Act of 1964, which prevents private and government employers from discriminating against potential and current employees as a result of their religions. For example, employers cannot pass you up for a promotion or fail to hire you for a job simply because your Christian, Hindu, Muslim or Jewish.
Employers are prohibited from discriminating against people on the basis of religion when:
- Hiring or firing employees;
- Assigning job tasks, classifying employees and compensating employees
- Transferring, promoting and laying off workers
- Recruiting and testing employees
- Speaking with employees — employers may not harass employees because of their religious beliefs
If you suspect that your employer has violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by discriminating against you because of your spiritual beliefs and practices, you may have a strong claim to pursue through the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Learn more about your right to live and work in the United States without suffering from religious discrimination by visiting our website. You have rights and they need to be protected.