Employees Seek Justice as Religion and Work Intersect: A Perspective From the United States


The main goal of this conceptual paper is to showcase how religion impacts the workplace in the United States (US). The demographics in the US workplace today is a rich mosaic of employees from various religious backgrounds such as Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, among others. One of the predominant factors for this diverse religious backdrop has been the consistent rise in immigration (Morgan, 2005; Cash & Gray, 2000). In 2014, 5.9% of the population was represented by faiths other than Christianity such as immigrant Muslim and Hindu faiths (Pew Research Center, 2015). There are several areas of conflict when employees wear their faiths to work (Grossman, 2008; Trottman, 2013). The main areas of contention arise in work schedule, dress codes, job responsibilities, requests for prayer rooms, celebration of religious holidays, employment discrimination, among others. The question that becomes a concern for any HRM (human resource management) leader is how to make business environments inclusive to all faiths (Bauza, 2006; Ramsey, 2007). Employees today assert that if they cannot freely express their religious practices at work their complete personas do not belong with them. They feel it is unfair to restrict religious expressions only to Sabbath days (Bauza, 2006; Morgan, 2005). The EEOC (equal employment opportunity) received more 3,000 charges for religious discrimination in 2014 as employees seek justice for harassment and discrimination. This research paper will identify different court cases on religion and its implications for organizations & business leaders (US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2016).

Author Information
Pramila Rao, Marymount University, USA

Paper Information
Conference: ECERP2016
Stream: Ethics - Ethics, Law, and Justice

This paper is part of the ECERP2016 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon