Why is this important?
This information applies to England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland
I'm Jewish and need to take Friday afternoons off work in winter to get home before dark and prepare for the Sabbath. At the moment, my boss is happy to let me do this and make up the time during the rest of the week. However, he is thinking of introducing a new shift pattern, which means I will not be able to do this any more. Can he do this?
It is now unlawful to discriminate against any worker because of their religion or belief. So, if your employer is introducing a new shift pattern which will be difficult for you because of your religion, it may be that you are the victim of indirect discrimination on religious grounds. Your employer would have to show exactly why it is essential for you to work on Friday afternoons. If he is unable to show that there was no other reasonable way to re-organise your work, his behaviour towards you may count as discrimination on religious grounds.
If you have experienced discrimination, you can get help from the EASS discrimination helpline.
If you think you have been discriminated against because of your religion, contact the Equality and Human Rights Commission at: www.equalityhumanrights.com.
In England, Wales and Scotland, for more information about discrimination because of religion, see Discrimination because of religion or belief, and What can I do if my employer treats me unfairly because of my religion or belief, in Discrimination fact sheets.