Be Aware Of Risks To Stopping Religious Symbols being Visibly Worn
Some time ago, we reported on the case of an employee who won a landmark battle when the European Court of Human Rights ruled that she had been discriminated against for being made to wear a uniform that prevented her from visibly wearing her crucifix. We pointed out the dangers to employers of domestic staff if an attempt was made to prevent an employee from wearing their religious symbol in a visible position.
Now, some years later, the same worker, Nadia Eweida has lodged an Employment Tribunal claim against the same worker for discrimination, alleging that she has faced victimisation and harassment for speaking out.
Ms. Eweida alleges that she was denied a break when she suffered eye-strain after an operation. She also said that a new uniform policy was introduced last year requiring female staff to tuck their cravats into their blouses, a move that she claims was designed to make it harder for her to wear her cross, which she now has to place on top of her cravat.
We will keep you informed of results.
Now that the fees for lodging an Employment Tribunal claim have been removed, employers must be even more aware that actions which impose restriction on the wearing of religious symbols can be costly in compensation.