When new and experienced business owners are crafting employee policies, there are many federal laws to keep in mind, including the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 says that employers cannot discriminate on the basis of religion. Employers are required under federal law to provide reasonable accommodations for their employees' religious beliefs if they are sincerely held.
Employers need to make sure they are properly incorporating the Civil Rights Act of 1964, among other federal employment laws, into their employees' contracts and employee handbooks as well as in hiring policies. A federal judge recently decided in favor of a lawsuit brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against clothing chain Abercrombie & Fitch. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission accused the retail chain of discriminating against a job applicant through their corporate "look policy."
The giant telecommunications company, Verizon Communications, has agreed to settle a lawsuit with the U.S. Equal Opportunity Commission that claimed the company discriminated against employees with disabilities. The EEOC said that Verizon's attendance policy did not reasonably accommodate workers with disabilities.
A company that grows beyond fifteen employees must make sure that their sexual harassment policies are in line with federal employment law. Employers must craft anti-harassment policies and make sure all employees understand what sexual harassment is and that it is prohibited. Employees must also know how they can file a complaint and these complaints must be followed up on. An employer should realize that even if they follow the rules, they can still be held liable for their employees' bad behavior.