Religious Accommodation Related to Clothing

     The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently announced that it had reached a settlement with a restaurant that the EEOC accused of religious discrimination.  The EEOC claimed that Georgia Blue hired an employee, Kaetoya Watkins, to work as a server.  The company’s dress code required that all servers wear blue jeans.  However, Watkins’ sincerely held religious beliefs only permitted her to wear skirts or dresses.  She requested that the company accommodate these religious beliefs by permitting her to wear a blue jean skirt, instead of pants.  The company denied the requested accommodation and instead told Watkins that the owner would not stray away from the company’s dress code.  Title VII of the Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination against employees on the basis of their sincerely held religious beliefs and requires that employers must make reasonable accommodations for such religious beliefs.  See Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Georgia Blue, No. 3:17-cv-00777 (S.D. Miss.).

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