Editor's message: Employers should accommodate religious observance wherever reasonably possible as a failure to do so may constitute indirect discrimination.
For example, an employer that requires female employees to comply with a dress code that does not allow Muslim women to wear a hijab would be unlawful unless the employer can show that the discriminatory effect of the requirement on Muslim women is outweighed by a good, non-discriminatory reason for imposing the requirement.
We discuss the justification of indirect discrimination in the context of religion or belief in Employment law manual > Equality and human rights > Religion or belief discrimination > Justification.
Ashok Kanani, employment law editor
A strict requirement to speak only English at work or a ban on religious dress at work can lead to the risk of race or religious discrimination, explains Deborah Bulman of Burges Salmon LLP.
Updated to include information on Kratzer v R+V Allgemeine Versicherung, in which the ECJ held that a person who applies for a job with the sole purpose of making an application for compensation for discrimination is not covered by EU discrimination law.
A table listing the religious discrimination awards made by employment tribunals in 2015/16.
The requirement to speak English at work and dress codes at work are policy areas where employers should tread carefully to avoid discrimination. Deborah Bulman, a senior associate from Burges Salmon LLP, considers recent legal controversies and gives tips on drafting employment policies.
In Harron v Chief Constable of Dorset Police  IRLR 481 EAT, the EAT allowed the employee's appeal against the ruling that his passionate belief in efficient use of public money did not constitute a "philosophical belief", on the basis that it was unclear if the tribunal had properly applied the necessary criteria. The issue was remitted to the tribunal for fresh consideration.
The Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) ordered the employment tribunal to reconsider whether or not a claimant's philosophical belief in the "proper and efficient use of public money in the public sector" is protected under the Equality Act 2010. Kate Hodgkiss explains the EAT's decision.
The Advocate General's opinion in Bougnaoui and another v Micropole Univers is that a complete ban on Muslim women wearing a hijab while in contact with customers or clients is discriminatory.
The Advocate General has suggested that an employer cannot have a blanket ban on religious dress that prevents a Muslim woman from wearing an Islamic headscarf when in contact with clients.
The Brexit vote has elicited strong feelings on either side and employers need to ensure that their employees do not become victims of bullying and harassment as a result. We provide four examples of scenarios that could result in claims against employers.
Employers need to ensure that their employees do not become victims of bullying and harassment as a result of the Brexit vote. We present four examples of scenarios that might lead to claims against employers.
HR and legal information and guidance relating to religion or belief discrimination.