The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced that it is changing how it collects data about the religion of someone who alleges discrimination.
An employee can file a formal job discrimination compliant with the EEOC if the employee believes he or she is being treated unfairly on the job because of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity and sexual orientation), national origin, disability, age (40 or older) or genetic information. An employee must file a Charge of Discrimination with the EEOC before filing a job discrimination lawsuit against the employer.
The EEOC and discrimination laws protect both traditional organized religions and newer, less common religions. People who do not have religious beliefs are also protected from discrimination in the workplace. According to the EEOC, it will now be asking for specific information about an individual’s religious affiliation when a Charge of Discrimination is filed. Presently, the EEOC collects religious discrimination charges identifying the following religions: Seventh Day Adventist, Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant, Sikh and “Other.” With the new changes, there will be a separate category for Buddhism and additional categories for other religions that are not collected at this time.
For information from the EEOC about religious discrimination charges, click here.