Comfort Inn Oceanfront South Sued By EEOC for Religious Discrimination

The owners/operators of Comfort Inn Oceanfront South in Nags Head, North Carolina, violated federal law when they failed to accommodate an employee’s religious beliefs and then fired her because of her religion, charged in a lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). According to the complaint, Claudia Neal, a front desk clerk at Comfort Inn Oceanfront South, is a Seventh-Day Adventist. In accordance with her religious practices, Neal observes her Sabbath from sundown on Friday until sundown on Saturday. Neal had previously been allowed off for her Sabbath by managers at the hotel. However, a manager scheduled Neal to work the evening shift on Friday, Dec. 24th. Because the shift interfered with her Sabbath observance, Neal, who had previously been allowed to be off for her Sabbath observance, explained that she could not work on that evening because of her Sabbath. The hotel managers refused Neal’s request and instead fired her. Full article.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 requires employers to make reasonable accom¬modations for the sincerely held religious beliefs of employees as long as doing so does not pose an undue hardship on the employer. The law requires an employer or other covered entity to reasonably accommodate an employee’s religious beliefs or practices, unless doing so would cause more than a minimal burden on the operations of the employer’s business. This means an employer may be required to make reasonable adjustments to the work environment that will allow an employee to practice his or her religion. Examples of some common religious accommodations include flexible scheduling, voluntary shift substitutions or swaps, job reassignments, and modifications to workplace policies or practices.

Leeds Brown Law, PC, dedicates a large area of practice to employment law. Our firm has had considerable success in matters of employment discrimination throughout Long Island and the New York City area. For more information, contact Leeds, Morelli and Brown, PC at 1-800-585-4658 for a free consultation.