Can my manager refuse to hire me full-time because of a religious belief?

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Can my manager refuse to hire me full-time because of a religious belief?

I work in the tire department of my store. I currently have Sundays off because I go to church. The store is going to start a block schedule meaning you work the same hours and days every week. My new store manager is refusing to let me be full-time in the tire department because I don’t work Sunday. Instead he has offered to let me work full-time in a different department with Sundays off. Can he refuse to hire me full-time in my tire department?

Asked on May 9, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Colorado

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

It depends upon the nature of the tire department and its business. An employer has to make "reasonable accommodations" to an employee's religious preferences; what is reasonable depends on the circumstances. If Sunday is a particularly busy day for the tire department so that staff need to be able to work that day, then giving you a job in a different department where taking Sunday off is not a problem is in fact a reasonable accommodation: a way to give you a full-time job without having an unreasonable impact on the employer. Only if there is no good business reason why you could not work in tires while having Sunday as your day off would this be religion-based employment discrimintion, in which case you'd have a claim.


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