Indiana Religious Discrimination laws & HR compliance analysis

Indiana Religious Discrimination: What you need to know

The Indiana Civil Rights Law prohibits employment discrimination based on religion (IN Code Sec. 22-9-1-1 et seq.). The Law applies to all public employers and private employers with six or more employees. A discriminatory practice is defined as the exclusion of a person from equal opportunities because of race, religion, color, sex, disability, national origin, ancestry, or status as a veteran.
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Exception for religious organizations. The Law does not apply to any nonprofit corporation or association organized exclusively for fraternal or religious purposes; or to any school, educational, or charitable religious institution owned, conducted by, or affiliated with a church or religious institution.
Evidence of discrimination. The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that derogatory remarks made by a manager who had input into employment decisions, along with management warnings about pro-Muslim articles written by an employee, provided sufficient evidence of discrimination for an employee to proceed to trial (Hasan v. Foley and Lardner LLP, 552 F.3d 520 (7th Cir. 2008)). In this case, the employee, a Muslim attorney, alleged that his work assignments decreased significantly after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. The decrease in his billable hours eventually led to the termination of his employment based on poor performance and a lack of work in his department. In reversing the lower court's decision, the court cited evidence of positive performance evaluations, evidence that other associates in the department had sufficient or increased workloads, and evidence of discriminatory comments made by a manager who, although he was not the employee's supervisor, provided input into the ...

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