We are circulating this Ramadan civil rights primer so that you will have the information you need to take full advantage of this blessed month. Please share it with your family and friends to ensure they too are empowered to assert their rights.
In the Workplace
You are entitled to prayer and iftar breaks and to take time off for Eid, so long as the request is reasonable and does not cause an undue hardship to the employer. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, in particular section 42 U.S.C. § 2000e(j), allows an employee to take time off from work for religious observance, so long as he or she gives the employer adequate notice and the employee's absence does not cause an undue hardship to the employer. Where an employer is exempt from Federal law, they may nonetheless be subject to California's Unruh Civil Rights Act (see § 51(b)).
Some best practices on how to request religious accommodation at work:
- Follow your employer's policies when requesting an accommodation. Before making your request, review your employer's handbook and follow any procedures stated in the employee handbook regarding notification and requesting time off.
- It is necessary you make clear that the reason you are requesting the accommodation is because of a religious belief or practice.
- Keep a personal record of when and how your request was made and whether and how it was accommodated.
- Be respectful when requesting an accommodation. Refrain from reciting the law, in the first instance, as most employers are willing to work with you to accommodate your requests for salat, iftar breaks, and Eid time off.
If your reasonable requests for prayer and iftar breaks and/or Eid are not accommodated, please contact us by completing this form online.
Students should be accommodated for prayers, iftars, and Eid. Requests for these accommodations should be made in writing. For more information, please review the information about school accommodations in CAIR-CA's recent report on Muslim youth at school (ref. pages 23-25).
If you have any concerns or questions, please complete this incident report form or call us at 916.441.6269 to speak with our Civil Rights Attorney, Saad Sweilem.
Lastly, please keep the CAIR-SV board, staff, and volunteers in your duas during these blessed days.