December 7, 2015
A 48-year-old man from Manhattan alleges that he was terminated from his job at Bed Bath & Beyond due to his beard, which is part of his Muslim faith. He has further claimed that co-workers tormented him for months on the job after he admitted that he was growing out his facial hair for religious reasons.
Upon learning of his new religious choice, employees supposedly called him a “terrorist.” When he repeatedly contacted human resources about the harassment, they ignored him. He was eventually fired, supposedly for missing several days of work. However, he claimed that his supervisor reset his vacation schedule.
He claimed that the name calling caused him to question everything about himself, including his beliefs and religion. He added that he was trying to build a relationship with his co-workers but felt betrayed by their hateful comments. In February 2013, one of the human resources manager questioned him about his beard in what he felt was an inappropriate and intrusive manner.
Bed Bath & Beyond released a statement to the media, stating that they do not allow harassment or illegal discrimination. They did not agree with the former employee’s version of events but did not provide specific details as they are waiting to see if he will take additional legal action.
He further explained that he was hired as a department manager in October 2012 after battling mouth and throat cancer. He really enjoyed his new position and going to work, and his personal life was thriving as well as he was living with his fiancée and their child. All that changed a few months later when he began to grow his beard after converting to Islam.
He decided to change religions after he watched his mother-in-law suffer from cancer. He felt that becoming a Muslim was his only hope.
In this case, a man decided to become a Muslim after he was hired at Bed Bath and Beyond. However, religious discrimination against him ultimately lead to his termination. If an employer violates your legal rights to practice your religion of choice, you can seek legal recourse by contacting an employment attorney.