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CAIR-MI Files EEOC Complaint for Muslim Woman Fired for Requesting Delayed Lunch Break During Ramadan

(FARMINGTON HILLS, MI, 6/27/2019) – The Michigan chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR-MI), a local chapter of the nation’s largest civil rights and advocacy organization, today filed an EEOC complaint on behalf of a Michigan Muslim woman against GDI Integrated Facility Services, Inc. alleging religious and gender discrimination.

According to the woman, she was suspended and then terminated after asking to be allowed to delay the timing of her lunch break to coincide with the breaking of the fast during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. During the month of Ramadan, Muslims around the world are required to abstain from eating and drinking from before sunrise to sunset. 

According to the client, the supervisor refused to allow her to delay her lunch by an hour, made Islamophobic comments before sending her home for the day and then terminating her the next day. 

According to CAIR-MI data, Muslims have seen a dramatic increase in civil rights complaints in 2019. Among the increase in overall civil rights complaints, CAIR-MI reports receiving one and a half times as many job-related discrimination complaints in the first quarter of 2019 compared to the same time the previous year.

SEE: CAIR-MI Reports Dramatic Increase in Muslim Civil Rights Complaints in First Quarter of 2019

Muslim Workers Say They Increasingly Face Bias in The Workplace

“No one should be forced to choose between their religion and providing for their family,” said CAIR-MI Staff Attorney Amy V. Doukoure. “It is incumbent upon employers to provide reasonable accommodations for employees sincerely held religious beliefs. When employers allow their personal biases to deter their legal obligations, individuals and organizations must step in and protect workers’ rights.”

CAIR offers a booklet, called “An Employer’s Guide to Islamic Religious Practices,” to help employers gain a better understanding of Islam and Muslims in the workplace.

CAIR: An Employer’s Guide to Islamic Religious Practices

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.


CONTACT: CAIR-MI Staff Attorney Amy V. Doukoure (586) 943-8823;; CAIR-MI Executive Director Dawud Walid, (248) 842-1418


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