Accomadating relationship in workplace dating in college is not a good idea
" employer´s duty to accommodate, as interpreted by various courts around the country.Keep in mind that the application of these principles is extremely fact-sensitive in nature, and a court having jurisdiction over your workplace might reach a contrary conclusion.American Airlines, the nation´s second largest carrier, revised its dress code policy in 1999 to allow employees to wear religious headwear and/or other articles of clothing required by religion.Federal Express recently settled a lawsuit with a Muslim employee in a customer service position who requested, and was denied, an exemption from the company´s "no beards in customer service positions" policy to accommodate his religious beliefs, which require males to wear beards.His job requires him to have frequent customer contact within a very conservative community and I am afraid his appearance will turn off our customers.We would have never hired him if he had looked that sloppy when he applied for employment.
It´s generally no defense for an employer to say " they never told me about this belief at the time of hire." However, if the matter progresses to litigation, your counsel may explore this issue in challenging the sincerity of the employee´s beliefs. The safest course of action in this area is to accommodate the employee´s request.Likewise, courts often require that the employee make some attempt to cooperate with an employer´s attempt at accommodation so that an accommodation is not impossible to reach, and are generally reluctant to require an employer to have to provide an "on the spot" accommodation to an employee´s request.The EEOC lists as possible reasonable accommodations things such as, "flexible scheduling (including flexible arrival and departure times, floating holidays, exchange of lunch time for early departure, staggered work hours, and allowing an employee to make up lost time), voluntary substitutions or swaps, job reassignments, and lateral transfers" The EEOC cautions employers against the following actions unless it can show that not doing so would create undue hardship: (1) scheduling examination or selection activities in conflict with a current or prospective employee´s religious needs; (2) inquiring about an applicant´s future availability at certain holiday times; (3) maintaining a restrictive dress code; (4) refusing to allow observance of a Sabbath or religious holiday; or (5) requiring employees to attend "new age" training programs that an employee says are inconsistent with his or her religious beliefs.To prove this, an employee has to show that: (1) he or she has a bona fide belief that compliance with an employment requirement is contrary to his or her faith; (2) he or she has informed the employer about the conflict; and (3) he or she was discharged because of his or her refusal to comply with the employment requirement.moral or ethical beliefs as to what is right and wrong which are sincerely held with the strength of traditional religious views (the EEOC has taken the position that vegetarianism might rise to this level);personal preferences based upon non-theological bases, such as a personal choice deduced from economic or social ideology (e.g.a Jewish employee who did not want to accept a transfer to a part of the country lacking an established and well-organized Jewish community).
Because of this, employers are urged to consult legal counsel versed in these issues before deciding to proceed on accommodation issues.