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EEOC to Employers: You Can't Dismiss Accommodation E-mail
Written by Don Byrd   
Friday, 17 February 2012

Here's a good religious freedom story for a Friday. The EEOC settled a case with an Ohio company that refused to consider hiring a Seventh-Day Adventist because he couldn't work on Saturdays in observance of the Sabbath.

According to the EEOC’s suit, Shannon Fantroy answered an online advertisement for a customer service position at Convergys’s call center in Hazelwood, Mo. Fantroy’s religious beliefs as a Hebrew Israelite require him to observe the Sabbath from sunup until sundown on Saturday. A recruiter for Convergys interviewed Fantroy and told him that he would have to work weekends. Fantroy informed the recruiter that he was unable to work on Saturdays due to his religious beliefs. The recruiter then told Fantroy that the interview was over unless he could work Saturdays.

The settlement amount - $15,000 - maybe isn't the most money in the world, but I'm heartened that the EEOC would prosecute a case like this. The message to secular employers is loud and clear. You can't simply rule out an entire faith in your hiring process where accommodation of their religious restrictions is an option.

Whether you observe the Sabbath on Saturday or Sunday, have a good weekend!

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