Abercrombie and Fitch Prosecuted for Discrimination Again

Abercrombie and Fitch at US Supreme Court on Civil Rights case

By Stephen Pate – Abercrombie and Fitch already have several convictions for human rights, civil rights and disability discrimination in the USA and the UK.

In the US, they lost a case of discrimination against a person with autism Abercrombie and Fitch fined $115K for discrimination against girl with autism and in the UK about a sales clerk with a prosthetic arm – Abercrombie & Fitch must pay US $15,000 to student with prosthetic arm dismissed for “looks.

The EEOC is pursuing another charge against the trendy retailer, this time in the US Supreme Court. The following statements were made by the complainant and the EEOC following the conclusion or oral arguments before the Supreme Court.

EEOC WASHINGTON-P. David Lopez, General Counsel of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), made the following statement at the conclusion of the Supreme Court argument in EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc., a case involving religious accommodation.

US Supreme Court

This year we celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, established as part of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  Title VII prohibits discrimination because of race, color, sex, national origin, and religion.

The prohibition against religious discrimination reflects this country’s historical tradition of religious freedom and religious tolerance. Since that time, the Commission has led the effort to enforce laws that prohibit religious discrimination for persons of all faiths. Today’s case is the latest effort to ensure all persons protected by  Title VII are not placed in the difficult position of choosing between adherence to one’s faith and a job.

Finally, I would be remiss not to recognize the courage and tenacity of Samantha Elauf.   Regardless of the outcome of this case, her effort to stand up for the important principles at issue is an inspiration.  Samantha now has a brief prepared statement that will be read by Christine Saah Nazer, EEOC spokesperson.

See – In Supreme Court Abercrombie Case, Religious Rights and Employer Responsibility Converge – US News 

Statement of Samantha Elauf in EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores

Samantha Elauf

WASHINGTON– Samantha Elauf filed the original charge of religious discrimination with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that led to today’s argument in the Supreme Court. She has the following statement for the press:

I was born and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma. When I applied for a position with Abercrombie Kids, I was a teenager who loved fashion.  I had worked in two other retail stores and was excited to work at the Abercrombie store.  No one had ever told me that I could not wear a head scarf and sell clothing.  Then I learned I was not hired by Abercrombie because I wear a head scarf, which is a symbol of modesty in my Muslim faith.  This was shocking to me.

I am grateful to the EEOC for looking into my complaint and taking this religious discrimination case to the courts.  I am not only standing up for myself, but for all people who wish to adhere to their faith while at work. Observance of my faith should not prevent me from getting a job.

Featured image – US News and World Report 

By Stephen Pate, NJN Network

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