SCOTUS Finds Against Abercrombie & Fitch
Today SCOTUS overturned a 10th Circuit case and Finds Against Abercrombie & Fitch. The case of EEOC v Abercrombie & Fitch, an 8 to 1 Court held that even if an employee/applicant does not inform management of a specific religious practice, the 1964 Civil Rights Act maybe enforced against an employer who refuses make a religious exception for that worker, when when that refusal is based on at least a suspicion or hunch that the worker follows such a practice and wants to keep doing so, even if contrary to company policy. The Court even suggested that this may extend even if the employer is completely unaware of the necessary religious exception.
Here, a 17 year old Samantha Elauf applied for a sales clerk job at a Ambercrombie & Fitch outlet store. When she applied she was wearing a head scarf as required by her Muslim faith. Even though the manager never inquired, the Court found that A&F should have had at least a suspicion that she needed a religious accommodation regarding the store’s no head ware policy for store clerks.