Discussion response 2

Michele Travers

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc.


Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc.

The purpose of this discussion is to highlight a discrimination case and briefly explain how the events impacted the work environment. A description of the application of Title VII legislation in regards to the protected religious class will be discussed. Religion, most notably religious clothing, has been more of an influencing concern for both employers and employees in today’s workplace (Lussier & Hendon, 2018). The conclusion of this post will engage mitigation for a religious fashion request presented to the writer while leading a clinical class on a nursing unit.

EEOC v. Retail

The bottom line of this case involved determining if a middle manager asked the potential employee if her hajib ( a Muslim woman’s headscarf) was an instrument of her religion. If the question was asked then, Abercrombie & Fitch, the retail company had no right, under Title VII to deny employment; but the issue was not presented, and therefore the woman could be denied employment without discriminatory retribution. The case was first found in favor of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) but then “in October 2013, the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit reversed the district court’s ruling and remanded the case because it found conflicting evidence on both sides regarding whether Abercrombie needed to initiate an interactive dialogue with [the potential employee] about the possible conflict of the work policy with her religious practices” (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc., 2013).

The critical legal issue involved was that the religious headscarf should have been discussed and therefore was not intended as a source of not hiring the candidate. Policies of companies need to be addressed as in this case, the middle manager should have inquired to both the candidate and to a human resource manager (HRM) for the correct and legal way to address the issue.

Strategy Proposal

While employed as an adjunct professor for a Nursing School, it was during the clinical sessions that a student began to wear different forms of handmade bracelets. After inquiring why she was wearing bracelets after the class was informed of a strict uniform code which included no bracelets or rings, other then a wedding band, the student stated she was becoming a pastor in her church and part of the induction involved the making and wearing of these bracelets. A compromise was met when she agreed to wear the bracelets around her ankles. Gratefully her church and our school did not have to involve lawyers for the outcome since a degree of emotional intelligence was used by both parties (Manion, 2011).


Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc., Title VII United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit ( 2013). Retrieved from: http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/cert/14-86

Lussier, R. N., & Hendon, J. R. (2018). Human resource management: Functions, applications, & skill development (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Manion, J. (2011). From management to leadership: Strategies for transforming health care (3rd ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

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