Arkansas Discrimination laws & HR compliance analysis

Arkansas Discrimination: What you need to know

The Arkansas Civil Rights Act prohibits employment discrimination based on race, religion, national origin (including ancestry), gender (including pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions), or sensory, mental, or physical disability (AR Stat. Sec. 16-123-101 et seq.). The Act applies to employers with nine or more employees.
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Retaliation. Employers are also prohibited from retaliating against an individual for opposing an unlawful discriminatory practice; making a charge; or testifying, assisting, or participating in an investigation, proceeding, or hearing concerning practices prohibited by the Act.
Individual liability. The Act was amended in 2017 to limit liability for employment discrimination to employers only (AR Stat. Sec. 16-123-107).
The Act does not apply to employment by a religious corporation, association, society, or other religious entity.
Reasonable accommodation. Employers must attempt to reasonably accommodate the religious beliefs and practices of job applicants and employees, unless to do so would create an undue business hardship. Under the Act, an employer may refuse to accommodate an applicant's or employee's religious observance or practice if the employer can demonstrate that it is unable to reasonably make the accommodation without undue hardship on the operation of the employer's business (AR Code Sec. 16-123-103(b)). Responding to a need for accommodation may mean exploring and implementing alternative workplace practices that are compatible with the employee's religious beliefs, such as flexible arrival and departure times, floating or optional holidays, flexible work breaks, use of lunch time in exchange for early departure, staggered ...

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