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Employee refuses to handle pork products for religious reasons

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  • Employee refuses to handle pork products for religious reasons

    I do business in Florida. I hired multiple people, not knowing that they were Muslim and had restrictions for handling pork products. I have pork products in my restaurant. All employees work all stations of the business. Am I able to terminate those employees because they can't perform the duties of the job?
    Junior Member
    Last edited by Mgau; 12-11-2008, 02:19 PM.

  • #2
    You might consult a Labor Law Attorney. What your asking is (in a way) can you fire them because of their Religon and the answer is no!


    • #3
      I'm not so sure of that. IF it is a requirement of the job that they must handle these products and IF there is no reasonable accomodation that will not cause a hardship on the business, then the employer may legally fire them. It's not as cut and dried as panther indicates.
      The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.


      • #4
        Panther, my reason for terminating is not based on Religion. It is based on the employee unwilling to perform tasks that are a vital part of the business. If I hired them to only be cashiers, and I then asked them to handle pork products, and then I wanted to terminate them, I could see a case for discrimination.


        • #5
          My post was suggestive only. Your walking a dangerous path depending on many factors if you cbg mistoook my post its my fault and I am sorry. This is a resteraunt what are their jobs? Were they aware of menu? Were you told of their faith and any restrictions at hiring? When did this happen? Without details I spoke in generic fashion. I spoke in manner I did as to best protect you! Whatever you use caution think it out and ask others


          • #6
            Why cant they just work other stations?


            • #7
              what are their jobs?

              Cashier, Drive Thru cash, Drive Thru order taker, sandwich station, prep, dishwashing

              Were they aware of menu?
              It is a well established Franchise. Do I know specifically if they were aware of the menu? No

              Were you told of their faith and any restrictions at hiring? I was not aware of their religion, and none indicated restrictions.

              When did this happen? First week of training, one week ago. Store is not open.

              I need to assign breaks and have people take over different stations, at different times. My staff is reduced after the rush and then they prep. Preping and Sandwich station require handling of pork.

              Thank you for your response.


              • #8
                I agree with cbg. You can't refuse to hire someone because they are Muslim. However; if accommodating their religious practice would cause the business to suffer undue hardship, you can legally fire them.

                Of course, you are certainly free to run it by an employment lawyer.
                Senior Member
                Last edited by Betty3; 12-11-2008, 10:27 PM.
                Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

                Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.


                • #9
                  You know, this is how the Sepoy Rebellion started.

                  Did you just begin to handle pork products or has this been an ongoing practice?
                  Not everything that makes you mad, sad or uncomfortable is legally actionable.

                  I am not now nor ever was an attorney.

                  Any statements I make are based purely upon my personal experiences and research which may or may not be accurate in a court of law.


                  • #10
                    Always had it. In regards to the Rebellion...I never knew pork was that Controversial


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