Religious Discrimination

Legal Help for Religious Discrimination Cases in Oregon

As with other forms of discrimination in the workplace, federal and state laws prohibit employers from treating any employees or prospective employees differently due to their religious beliefs, or the religious practices they employ. The main federal law on this issue – Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 – prohibits both public and private employers (who have 15 or more employees) from discriminating against their employees, or against potential employees, on the basis of religion in public and private employment. In addition to this, Title VII also declares that employers must also make reasonable accommodations for employees when it comes to religious holidays and customs, unless they would experience undue hardship in doing so. The federal Civil Rights Division – which is responsible for bringing Title VII suits against employers in the state and local government who are accused of discrimination – also works with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to combat all types of discrimination, including religious discrimination, in employment.

On the state level, the Oregon Fair Employment Practice Act (codified in ORS Sec. 659A.030 et. seq.), prohibits any public or private employer – regardless of the number of employees they have – from discriminating against employees or potential employees on the basis of their religion or their association with someone of a particular religion. As the federal Civil Rights Division is charged with enforcing Title VII, the Oregon Civil Rights Division of the state’s Bureau of Labor and Industries is charged with enforcing the state anti-discrimination law. On both the federal and the state level, if you feel you have been discriminated against due to your religion, or the religious practice you engage in, then it is recommended that you consult with a Portland employment law attorney right away. Depending on the type of employer and the type of discrimination involved, you may be required to file a complaint with one of these governmental bureaus – which allows them to begin their own investigation of the matter – before you bring any action in civil court. In addition, you may be entitled to significant compensation for a number of losses, including lost wages and mental and emotional strife, and our attorneys can help you fight for your rights.

HKM Employment Attorneys is a law firm that focuses solely on employment law. We have represented a large number of clients in all manner of employment cases, including those that involve discrimination because of religious beliefs, sexual orientation, or age. As we have provided help to employees in such a large number of these cases, we are able to quickly analyze the strengths and weaknesses of a client’s case, and develop an approach that is designed to increase their chances of a successful outcome. We are immediately available to give you the legal support and guidance you need to take action against those who have discriminated against you due to your religious affiliations.

What constitutes religious discrimination?


Religious discrimination can consist of many different acts, such as firing, demoting, harassing, refusing to hire, or refusing to promote due to someone being (or not being):

  • Christian
  • Jewish
  • Buddhist
  • Muslim
  • Mormon
  • Scientologist
  • Rastafarian
  • Hindu
  • Indigenous

Regardless of an employer’s religious beliefs, they are not allowed to require as a condition of employment an employee having to participate (or not participate) in a certain religious belief or practice.

Have you suffered religious discrimination in your place of work? Contact a Portland religious discrimination lawyer who is ready and available to take legal action against those responsible on your behalf.