Author Topic: Unequal Opportunities  (Read 1613 times)

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Offline Chronos

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Unequal Opportunities
« on: June 18, 2012, 05:59:47 AM »
Not Christian Enough? Job Seeker Sues Company for Asking When He Was 'Saved'

Quote
In the complaint filed against Voss by the EEOC, Wolfe says he saw the position on a church website. His first interview went well, but in a second interview with the branch manager, he told lawyers, he was questioned about his religious practices and beliefs.

...

The complaint claims the manager asked Wolfe if he would "have a problem" coming to work early, without pay, to attend Bible study.

I know I definitely have a problem with that, and I definitely have a problem with being asked about details unrelated to the job. But, I also wouldn't apply for a job where I have to work with a bunch of religious nut-jobs.

I also will not patronize a business full of religious nut-jobs.
John 14:2 :: In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

Offline magicmiles

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2012, 06:24:07 AM »
Might be a tough case to win. Be hard to demonstrate that he definitely would have received the position if not for his answers to the religious questions.

What would the damages be, anyway? I guess maybe he's just hoping to make some sort of statement against the company. I wonder how his suit is being financed?
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Offline Frank

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2012, 12:07:13 PM »
Might be a tough case to win. Be hard to demonstrate that he definitely would have received the position if not for his answers to the religious questions.

What would the damages be, anyway? I guess maybe he's just hoping to make some sort of statement against the company. I wonder how his suit is being financed?

I think he has a very good chance of winning. Was the guy who actually got the job "born again"? How many catholics, jews, muslims, atheists. etc work there? In other words are they deliberately excluding people who aren't southern "born again" baptists? What are the chances of the entire workforce of a large company being members of the same sect of christianity? I would say it's pretty small to say the least. If he can prove that he has a strong case.

I would also say they don't seem quite so picky about the religion of their customers. They don't care whether you're born again when they're taking your money.
"Atheism is not a mission to convert the world. It only seems that way because when other religions fall away, atheism is what is left behind".

Offline Kimberly

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2012, 12:20:41 PM »
I have little sympathy for people who walk in to a situation that is obviously a bad idea, then get pissed off when it doesn't go the way the expected it. This behavior just doesn't sit well with me. Maybe this person was slightly religious so they had no idea that not being religious enough would be an issue. Maybe he's not one of those ambulance chasers. Or maybe the lighting industry is really slow in that area and it was his only option? IDK, but I have a hard time feeling sympathetic. Don't go apply for jobs that are ran by crazy people! You have to ask yourself, "Did they do me a favor by not hiring me?" In this case the answer is yes, because they have unbelievable expectations of their employees. So just be happy that they did you the favor of not hiring you and move on. Besides what if the guy they did hire really was more qualified? Then you look like an ambulance chaser and no one will take you seriously.
Thank you for considering my point of view; however wrong it may be to you.

Offline Frank

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2012, 12:24:20 PM »
I have little sympathy for people who walk in to a situation that is obviously a bad idea, then get pissed off when it doesn't go the way the expected it. This behavior just doesn't sit well with me. Maybe this person was slightly religious so they had no idea that not being religious enough would be an issue. Maybe he's not one of those ambulance chasers. Or maybe the lighting industry is really slow in that area and it was his only option? IDK, but I have a hard time feeling sympathetic. Don't go apply for jobs that are ran by crazy people! You have to ask yourself, "Did they do me a favor by not hiring me?" In this case the answer is yes, because they have unbelievable expectations of their employees. So just be happy that they did you the favor of not hiring you and move on. Besides what if the guy they did hire really was more qualified? Then you look like an ambulance chaser and no one will take you seriously.

Best not apply for any job where the entire workforce is male then.
"Atheism is not a mission to convert the world. It only seems that way because when other religions fall away, atheism is what is left behind".

Offline Kimberly

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2012, 12:28:17 PM »
Don't be obtuse Frank.
Thank you for considering my point of view; however wrong it may be to you.

Offline Frank

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #6 on: June 18, 2012, 12:33:26 PM »
Don't be obtuse Frank.

Excuse me? How could he possibly know you had to be born again to work for that company. It's illegal to put that in a vacancy add. He feels he's been discriminated against he sued. Best of luck to him.

How would you feel if companies stopped hiring atheists? Put you out of a job wouldn't it.
"Atheism is not a mission to convert the world. It only seems that way because when other religions fall away, atheism is what is left behind".

Offline MadBunny

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #7 on: June 18, 2012, 12:56:54 PM »
Looks like an open and shut case to me.

Give a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a night.  Set a man on fire and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

Offline Kimberly

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #8 on: June 18, 2012, 01:06:44 PM »
Don't be obtuse Frank.

Excuse me?

You made a sarcastic statement to me with out provocation or explaining where you disagreed with my position. Sure I could assume, but it's not my job to assume what you mean or to reply according. Hence why I asked you to not be obtuse.

How could he possibly know you had to be born again to work for that company.

I did address that did I not?

Maybe this person was slightly religious so they had no idea that not being religious enough would be an issue. Maybe he's not one of those ambulance chasers. Or maybe the lighting industry is really slow in that area and it was his only option?

It's illegal to put that in a vacancy add. He feels he's been discriminated against he sued. Best of luck to him.

It's illegal to put what in a vacancy add? I hope your not implying that I ever wished him ill luck, because I didn't.

How would you feel if companies stopped hiring atheists? Put you out of a job wouldn't it.

I don't tell my employers I'm an atheist as it's non of their business. The second an employer started asking about my religious preferences I would get up and leave the interview.
Thank you for considering my point of view; however wrong it may be to you.

Offline magicmiles

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #9 on: June 18, 2012, 04:41:47 PM »


I think he has a very good chance of winning. Was the guy who actually got the job "born again"? How many catholics, jews, muslims, atheists. etc work there? In other words are they deliberately excluding people who aren't southern "born again" baptists? What are the chances of the entire workforce of a large company being members of the same sect of christianity? I would say it's pretty small to say the least. If he can prove that he has a strong case.

I would also say they don't seem quite so picky about the religion of their customers. They don't care whether you're born again when they're taking your money.

Is it even illegal in the USA for a company to seek candidates who profess to a certain brand of faith? It isn't in Australia....not yet, anyway.

If the candidate they hired has more relevant work experience, as the company states, then it won't matter how many of the current workforce are southern baptist. 

One of the frustrating things about legal actions alleging discrimination in employment is that they very rarely progress to any sort of judgement, they almost always get settled via mediation. I personally would love to see more of these matters thrashed out in a court-room so that there is more clarity and precedent to look at.
Go on up you baldhead.

Offline Kimberly

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2012, 04:49:17 PM »
You can't discriminate for religious reasons. But I don't know if churches get an exemption from the rule? I think the issue is the business is not tax exempt, they aren't a church, they are like everyone else and should follow the rules just like every other employer. The problem really is how to prove discrimination when you don't know if the person hired was truly more qualified or not. From the article I'm not sure how the guy knew they actually discriminated other than his perception of the 2nd interview and not getting the job.
Thank you for considering my point of view; however wrong it may be to you.

Offline Nam

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #11 on: June 18, 2012, 05:52:02 PM »
The guy applied, if I'm understanding correctly, to a place advertised on a church website, and then decided to sue when he was asked if he was "saved"? Sound like he was getting the job? Which makes me think he set the whole thing up. I mean, if he has such a problem with that question why is he looking for a job on a church website?

-Nam
This thread is about lab-grown dicks, not some mincy, old, British poof of an actor. 

Let's get back on topic, please.


Offline Kimberly

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #12 on: June 18, 2012, 06:08:12 PM »
My sentiments exactly Nam.
Thank you for considering my point of view; however wrong it may be to you.

Offline Frank

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #13 on: June 18, 2012, 06:30:22 PM »
The guy applied, if I'm understanding correctly, to a place advertised on a church website, and then decided to sue when he was asked if he was "saved"? Sound like he was getting the job? Which makes me think he set the whole thing up. I mean, if he has such a problem with that question why is he looking for a job on a church website?

-Nam

Well times are hard so fantastic as it sounds maybe he was just looking for a job FFS. Not everything is a conspiracy you know.

You're making excuses for a blatant act of religious discrimination and blaming it on the person being discriminated against. Amazing.
"Atheism is not a mission to convert the world. It only seems that way because when other religions fall away, atheism is what is left behind".

Offline magicmiles

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #14 on: June 18, 2012, 06:41:03 PM »


You're making excuses for a blatant act of religious discrimination

You simply don't know this to be true. The employer claims the most qualified person was selected. Why do you believe the complainant over the defendant?
Go on up you baldhead.

Offline Mr. Blackwell

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #15 on: June 18, 2012, 07:37:12 PM »
VOSS lighting is a privately held company in a Right to Work state.

They can hire or fire for any reason they choose without warning or notice. Sorry folks. That's just the way it is.

Cracker Barrel fired an employee once because they kept coming to work with funky colored hair. The girl sued Cracker Barrel for sexual discrimination because she was lesbian.

Cracker Barrel not only stood their ground, they publicly announced that they would no longer hire any homosexuals...period.

There were several discrimination suits brought against Cracker Barrel and to the best of my knowledge...nothing ever came from them.

The reason? They are a privately owned company. If they were a public company or a governmental agency then things are different.

I am sure I am missing some nuances here but the gist is that any private company has the right to hire whomever they see fit. Or, not hire for any reason they choose. EEOC has no jurisdiction over mom and pop, no matter how many stores they operate.
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Offline stuffin

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #16 on: June 18, 2012, 08:13:14 PM »


I don't tell my employers I'm an atheist as it's non of their business. The second an employer started asking about my religious preferences I would get up and leave the interview.

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Offline Chronos

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #17 on: June 18, 2012, 10:44:20 PM »
VOSS lighting is a privately held company in a Right to Work state.

They can hire or fire for any reason they choose without warning or notice. Sorry folks. That's just the way it is.

A "right to work" state is one in which an employee cannot be forced to join a union in order to secure or maintain employment. It has nothing to do with religious discrimination or the ability to hire/fire.

Some states provide for "at-will" employment, which means that unless there is an express (written) contract between an employee and employer that specifies the length or conditions of employment, the employer can fire an employee for any reason the employer wishes as long as the employer is not violating existing federal or state laws, or the employer is not violating its own internal hiring/firing practices (inconsistent).

Religious belief, or lack thereof, is a protected class with the EEOC and Voss Lighting cannot violate EEOC regulations.


Cracker Barrel fired an employee once because they kept coming to work with funky colored hair. The girl sued Cracker Barrel for sexual discrimination because she was lesbian.

There are women who are not lesbians who have funky colored hair. One of them, Urs, used to visit this forum frequently; however, Urs is not a lesbian. If Cracker Barrel specifies that all employees must show up for work with their natural hair color or a range of acceptable hair colors, they can do so, but it has nothing to do with sexual orientation.

Cracker Barrel not only stood their ground, they publicly announced that they would no longer hire any homosexuals...period.

Unfortunately, under current law as long as Cracker Barrel is consistent in that regard, they are free to discriminate in that fashion.

There were several discrimination suits brought against Cracker Barrel and to the best of my knowledge...nothing ever came from them.

The reason? They are a privately owned company. If they were a public company or a governmental agency then things are different.

Private companies can get and do get successfully sued for discrimination, but most private companies wisely negotiate a settlement for cases with merit before the cases make it to the courtroom. Or, as often occurs nowadays, the dispute is settled through arbitration and the cases are never heard or known publicly. Just because a company is a private organization doesn't mean that private companies are immunized from successful discrimination lawsuits. The successful cases are ones that are for protected EEOC classes or ones in which the employees can demonstrate inconsistent internal practices according to the company's own procedures.


I am sure I am missing some nuances here but the gist is that any private company has the right to hire whomever they see fit. Or, not hire for any reason they choose. EEOC has no jurisdiction over mom and pop, no matter how many stores they operate.

That is incorrect. The EEOC requires employers to post an EEOC notice for employees, such as this one, but not all employers, especially mom-and-pop operations, realize that they are not in compliance with that requirement. EEOC compliance for protected classes is required by all employers -- even my "mom and pop" operation must abide by EEOC regulations. Whether I conduct interviews now for my small business or when I conducted interviews while I worked for a large, private corporation, EEOC regulations were/are ever-present, preventing us from asking certain questions, such as age, religion, disability, etc. Can I, as a small employer, ask about your religious beliefs and get away with it? Probably, but not because the law doesn't apply to me. More than likely I could get away with questioning your religious beliefs because small employers see few lawsuits since small employers generally don't have big pockets like large corporations. If it isn't going to make an attorney some income, an attorney won't take the case. How's that for justice? Also, small employers often hire employees with basic skills that make them easily employable elsewhere so once the employee has secured employment elsewhere the employee is unlikely to pursue damages further.

The EEOC enforces a variety of federal laws, not all of which apply to small employers. For example, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies only to employers with 15 or more employees, which excludes me, so if you reply to my ad for employment and you come into my office in a wheelchair and complain that the file cabinet is too high for you to reach, I don't have to worry about it. I can decline your application for a job (or even fire you) specifically because you are unable to reach the top drawer of one of my file cabinets and you cannot sue me for an ADA violation.

While the EEOC regulations also apply to government entities, such as local, state and federal governments, the process by which one files an EEOC complaint against a government entity is handled through a different legal path.



Now, with regard to this guy suing Voss ... what I found interesting is that either (1) this is a setup in which a specific employer was targeted for a blatant, repeated EEOC violations or (2) it was a one-man mission to find out who is a True ChristianTM and who ain't, a sort of reverse public relations fiasco. Either way, it's a demonstration of why religion shouldn't be in the workplace unless your workplace is specific to religion (a church). Voss cannot legally inquire about the religious status or affiliation of any of its employes, nor can it require that current or prospective employees participate in unpaid religious activities. Worse, if Voss does require employees to show up to work early to participate in any activity, Voss will have to pay its employees for the extra time spent on the job. Since I am sure that Voss squeezes every employee for every minute of a 40-hour work week, those extra "bible study meetings" before the workday begins qualify as overtime, which is 1.5x normal pay or 2x normal pay on federal holidays. Praise Jesus! Hallelujah!

John 14:2 :: In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

Offline Mr. Blackwell

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #18 on: June 18, 2012, 11:08:03 PM »
It appears I stand corrected. However, the funky haired employee of Cracker Barrel did in fact sue for sexual discrimination but perhaps the case was dismissed because she did violate company policy about hair color.

Check that....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cracker_Barrel_Old_Country_Store#Controversies


Seems my memory of things are all fucked up. But I swear to...whatever...that there was a girl with funky colored hair who got fired somewhere in the mix.....dammit.
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Offline Chronos

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #19 on: June 18, 2012, 11:31:44 PM »
It appears I stand corrected. However, the funky haired employee of Cracker Barrel did in fact sue for sexual discrimination but perhaps the case was dismissed because she did violate company policy about hair color.

I personally cannot stand Cracker Barrel, but it has nothing to do with their hiring/firing practices. I just can't tolerate the atmosphere, the service or the food. What do I find at Cracker Barrel on the 2 occasions I have actually dined there? Bus loads of senior citizens with way too much time on their hands taking way too much time to eat and wheeling and dealing for the cheapest eats in a restaurant that serves to the table about the same quality of food that I find at a Golden Corral buffet (another place I do not patronize). The only value I find in Cracker Barrel is that they have public restrooms conveniently located at major exits on most interstate highways, but inconveniently located past many hurdles of useless, foreign-made crap that they display in a flea-market manner to old people who have about $6 to spend on a trinket.

John 14:2 :: In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

Offline Kimberly

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #20 on: June 19, 2012, 07:37:00 AM »
But their breakfast is so yummy and they serve it all day! I eat there just about any time I want anything other than homemade or fast food breakfast. Some how I missed the part about their discrimination. The one close to where I live hires the people from the AA across the street. I thought that was pretty nice considering the low success rate of AA and the likelihood that the employee will end up back on the wagon, increasing their risks for being late or no call no shows.
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Offline Frank

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #21 on: June 19, 2012, 11:45:28 AM »


I don't tell my employers I'm an atheist as it's non of their business. The second an employer started asking about my religious preferences I would get up and leave the interview.

DITTO!

Yeah. That showed em!
"Atheism is not a mission to convert the world. It only seems that way because when other religions fall away, atheism is what is left behind".

Offline Kimberly

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #22 on: June 19, 2012, 12:47:03 PM »


I don't tell my employers I'm an atheist as it's non of their business. The second an employer started asking about my religious preferences I would get up and leave the interview.

DITTO!

Yeah. That showed em!

Do you have a point or do you just like be sarcastic for the sake of looking like a tool?
Thank you for considering my point of view; however wrong it may be to you.

Offline Frank

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #23 on: June 19, 2012, 01:06:29 PM »


I don't tell my employers I'm an atheist as it's non of their business. The second an employer started asking about my religious preferences I would get up and leave the interview.

DITTO!

Yeah. That showed em!

Do you have a point or do you just like be sarcastic for the sake of looking like a tool?

My point? You appear to be happy to have a go at me, someone on the internet thousands of miles away, yet if someone in the same room asks you intrusive questions at a job interview you would simply get up and leave without so much as a whimper. Lack of consistency here don't you think?
"Atheism is not a mission to convert the world. It only seems that way because when other religions fall away, atheism is what is left behind".

Offline Kimberly

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #24 on: June 19, 2012, 01:22:32 PM »
My point? You appear to be happy to have a go at me, someone on the internet thousands of miles away, yet if someone in the same room asks you intrusive questions at a job interview you would simply get up and leave without so much as a whimper. Lack of consistency here don't you think?

You're a tad self centered aren't you? For one I'm not experiencing any emotion when engaging in conversation with you. I find your obtuseness and attempt at baiting me to be a counter productive to the nature of this forum. I'm not expressing any lack of consistency and your attempt to misplace my behaviors are rude. The two behaviors are non-sequential, so either talk to me like you're an adult or keep your snarky comments to yourself.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2012, 01:24:06 PM by Kimberly »
Thank you for considering my point of view; however wrong it may be to you.

Offline Frank

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Re: Unequal Opportunities
« Reply #25 on: June 19, 2012, 01:27:40 PM »
My point? You appear to be happy to have a go at me, someone on the internet thousands of miles away, yet if someone in the same room asks you intrusive questions at a job interview you would simply get up and leave without so much as a whimper. Lack of consistency here don't you think?

You're a tad self centered aren't you? For one I'm not experiencing any emotion when engaging in conversation with you. I find your obtuseness and attempt at baiting me to be a counter productive to the nature of this forum. I'm not expressing any lack of consistency and your attempt to misplace my behaviors are rude. The two behaviors are non-sequential, so either talk to me like you're an adult or keep your snarky comments to yourself.

Quite honestly I haven't read your reply. England v Ukraine is about to kick off. Gotta go!!
"Atheism is not a mission to convert the world. It only seems that way because when other religions fall away, atheism is what is left behind".