Editor: I’m grateful for guest columns because as you know I am traveling for a month to visit refugee hot spots and although the trip is beyond my wildest expectations in what I am learning and who I am meeting, I am only disappointed that I don’t have more time to write. This is a guest column by reader Linda and an example of the great investigative work by Americans volunteering their time and talents around the US!
On June 29th this blog described a report from Reuters that stated that the White House would be launching a “Call to Action” to encourage American companies to commit to employing refugees. This “call” is in collaboration with the UN and coincides nicely with the summit on the global refugee crisis that President Obama will be hosting during the UN General Assembly in September.
Since the overwhelming majority of refugees who constitute the current “crisis” are Muslim, it is prudent to look behind the veil of humanitarianism to see just what employing Muslim refugees might entail for U.S. companies.
One very important statistic that potential employers should be aware of is that, despite representing only 1% of the U.S. population, people who practice Islam filed 40% of the religion-based complaints that were filed with the U.S. Equal Opportunity Employment Commission in 2015.
These complaints range from allegations of denial of employment based on the religion of the applicant, disputes regarding companies’ dress policies, failure to accommodate the needs for multiple prayer breaks during work shifts, to general failures by companies to provide “religious accommodation.”
A review of a U.S. EEOC January 2016 list of “Resolved Cases Alleging Religious and National Origin Discrimination Involving the Muslim, Sikh, Arab, Middle Eastern and South Asian Communities” revealed some interesting data and facts that should be of interest to all U.S. employers who might find themselves persuaded by the hype from the White House (and by the tax incentives!).
Millions of dollars have been paid by companies small and large as ordered by courts to resolve cases of religious discrimination against Muslims. To cite a few of these cases: $240,000 awarded to two employees of a transport company who refused to transport alcohol because of their religious beliefs and were subsequently fired (the jury felt they should have been reassigned to a less offensive shipment); $44,654 awarded to an applicant who was not hired because she wore a hijab to her interview ($25,671 to the applicant for back pay from the job she didn’t get and $18,983 to the EEOC for costs); several cases of employees who claimed discrimination because they were not allowed to have beards (usually in the food industry or healthcare); many cases of discrimination for not allowing hijabs to be worn in the workplace; numerous cases of alleged harassment by other employees that were not corrected or were ignored by management.
CAIR (Council on American Islamic Relations) is frequently the party that files the claims on behalf of employees and they pressure businesses into accommodating the most trivial of Muslim practices advocated for in sharia law. They have published An Employer’s Guide to Islamic Religious Practices which I encourage any potential employer to obtain. You can get it by clicking here. You will be amazed at the accommodations you might be expected to provide such as understanding refusal to shake hands with and avoidance of eye contact with members of the opposite sex.
Warning to US corporations large and small!
Think long and hard about the potential risks of employing recent Muslim refugees. It may not be worth the potential tax breaks and good press. CAIR will be watching closely for more opportunities to transform the American workplace through litigation.
Editor: You must have a look at CAIR’s handbook (again click here). And, this is what I said about my recent visit to Owatonna, Minnesota. This is creeping sharia!
And, then ‘oh my gosh’ I traveled to Owatonna, Minnesota where an aluminum window company is being sued by CAIR on behalf of Somalis over the issue of prayer break times. And, in what can only be called ‘providential’ I met a woman who has followed the conflicts involving the Somalis in Owatonna since Somalis first arrived there in 1992/93! And, guess what, that is the year the US State Department says the first Somalis went to Minnesota! Their destination was Owatonna! Now guess who wanted the Somali workers? This same window company now being sued!
We first heard about these CAIR-generated lawsuits back in 2008 with the Minnesota Gold n’ Plump settlement, here.
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