HR needs to be proactive about religious accommodation

Employers that ignore religion run risk of unintentional discrimination
By Mary Romanow and Len Karakowsky
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 11/29/2007

The growing need for HR practitioners to deal with the challenges of religious accommodation is the consequence of an increasingly diverse workforce. In order to effectively tackle these challenges, HR needs to think more proactively rather than simply responding ad hoc to legislation.

Organizations unaware of the diverse nature of religious practices and the need for religious accommodation may unintentionally generate discrimination claims. Employers can help avoid legal disruptions, and improve their image as an employer of choice, by maintaining careful awareness of evolving laws and jurisprudence, seeking legal advice and interpretation and proactively adapting workplace policies.

So what should organizations be asking and addressing in order to become more strategically responsive to this issue? Here are some questions to consider: