Justices rule for Tulsa Muslim denied job

SupremeCourt1The Supreme Court ruled (EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch, 14-86) Monday for a Muslim woman who did not get hired after she showed up to a Tulsa job interview with clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch wearing a black headscarf.

The justices said that employers generally have to accommodate job applicants and employees with religious needs if the employer at least has an idea that such accommodation is necessary.

SupremeCourt2Job applicant Samantha Elauf did not tell her interviewer she was Muslim. But Justice Antonin Scalia said for the court that Abercrombie “at least suspected” that Elauf wore a headscarf for religious reasons. “That is enough,” Scalia said in an opinion for seven justices.

The headscarf, or hijab, violated the company’s strict dress code for employees who work in its retail stores, but Abercrombie has since changed its policy on headscarves and has settled similar lawsuits elsewhere.