A federal judge has ruled that an Abercrombie & Fitch store violated the civil rights of a Muslim employee when by firing her for wearing a hijab, the head covering worn by some Muslim women. A new report released by Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding suggests that such incidents might not be that unusual in an increasingly diverse workforce. According to the report, more than one-in-three American workers have experienced personally or witnessed incidents of religious non-accommodation, such as being required to work on religious holidays. Among non-Christian workers, half of those surveyed say employers ignore their religious needs.
The issue of religious dress is a particularly sensitive one in the Muslim community. A survey of Muslim Americans conducted by Pew Research Center found a slim majority (51 percent) of Muslims reported they worry women who wear the headcover or hijab in public will be treated poorly because it identifies them as Muslim.
A PRRI survey found that many Americans do not have a strong understanding of Islam or frequent contact with Muslims. Only 14 percent of Americans say they know a lot about the religious beliefs and practices of Muslims, and four-in-ten Americans report they have not had a conversation with a Muslim in the last 12 months.