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Philadelphia Religious Discrimination Attorneys: Largest Missouri Verdict Ever

May 21st, 2012

In a recent case of religious discrimination in Kansas City,Missouri, a woman was awarded five million dollars in punitive damages, and $120,000 in lost wages, making this the largest verdict ever awarded for a religious discrimination suit in the state of Missouri.  The case was brought against one of the largest corporations in the United States when the plaintiff lost her $70,000 per year job after suffering intense harassment from co-workers and supervisors about her religious affiliation.

After working for the corporation for seven years, the woman converted to the Muslim faith and began to wear the attire customary of a Muslim woman.  Over the next three years, co-workers relentlessly made offensive remarks and hurled stereotype slurs at her, mocking both her religious beliefs as well as her attire.  On one occasion, her supervisor forcibly removed her head covering and exposed her hair, which is a sign of disrespect to a Muslim woman.  The plaintiff suffered such intense emotional turmoil from the continued harassment that her physical health deteriorated and she found she could no longer work in the hostile environment.  She was fired for not reporting to work despite the fact that she had reported the abuse to the Human Resources department several times over the three year period.

Federal Discrimination Law Protects Religious Freedom

Under TitleVIIof the Civil Rights Act of 1964, discrimination based on religion is unlawful.  Employers are responsible for making reasonable accommodations to support an employee’s right to practice their faith, which includes, but is not limited to, time off for religious observances, permitting traditional wardrobe, and allowing customary hair styles and head coverings.  Unless an employer can prove that reasonable accommodations cannot be made without causing a hardship to the business, an employee should not be discriminated in any way, including harassment by other employees, supervisors, or administrators.

Religious discrimination in the form of harassment can be verbal or physical.  Verbal harassment can include insults, inappropriate or offensive remarks, or jokes aimed at the individual at such a rate that they interfere with the employee’s productivity, or threaten their physical or emotional health.  Physical harassment can include violent, aggressive, or unwanted contact.  This can include pushing, groping, physical altercations, or destruction of personal property.  Any form of incessant, aggressive behavior that is aimed at an individual’s religious affiliation or belief violates their rights to religious freedom.

Call the Philadelphia Religious Discrimination Attorneys at Sidney L. Gold & Associates

If you or a loved one has been a victim of religious discrimination in the workplace, the Philadelphia religious discrimination attorneys at Sidney L. Gold & Associates can help.  If co-workers or supervisors have harassed you verbally or physically, or if you’ve been refused employment or promotion, or have been terminated because of your religious belief, our religious discrimination attorneys can help you seek justice.  Our discrimination attorneys’ experience and knowledge of religious discrimination laws will ensure that your right to religious freedom is protected in the workplace.  We will review the details of your situation, advise you on the best way to proceed with a claim, and represent you in all proceedings.  Call our Philadelphia religious discrimination attorneys at 215-569-1999 for a free consultation or contact us online.

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