Personal Religious Beliefs in the Workplace: How Not to Define Indirect Discrimination

22 Pages Posted: 31 Oct 2011

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Date Written: October 29, 2011

Abstract

Religious discrimination occurs when a person is treated less favourably because of her religion. In cases of indirect discrimination the claimant needs to demonstrate that an otherwise neutral measure has caused her to suffer a particular disadvantage which people with different religious beliefs did not suffer. In Eweida v. British Airways the Court of Appeal held that personal religious beliefs which are not part of official religious dogma cannot be relied upon as a basis for a claim of indirect discrimination. The article argues that this is an erroneous interpretation of anti-discrimination law. It discusses, first, the reasoning in Eweida; then, it examines the treatment of personal religious beliefs in other cases in Britain and the United States; finally, it places the issue in a human rights framework.

Keywords: indirect discrimination, freedom of religion, employment, Eweida v. British Airways

Suggested Citation

Hatzis, Nicholas, Personal Religious Beliefs in the Workplace: How Not to Define Indirect Discrimination (October 29, 2011). Oxford Legal Studies Research Paper No. 57/2011. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1951135 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1951135

Nicholas Hatzis (Contact Author)

City, University of London ( email )

4 Gray's Inn Place
London, WC1R 5DX
United Kingdom

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