Look Policies: Can employers discriminate based on their physical attractiveness?

Author: Stephanie Scott, Associate Member, University of Cincinnati Law Review

Companies with mandatory grooming or appearance standards for their employees have been under fire from society, celebrities, and the law for many years. One of the companies most known for discriminating against unattractive or overweight applicants is Abercrombie & Fitch. Consumers have been outraged that the company only hires conventionally attractive people, requires those employees to follow a strict “look policy” Continue reading “Look Policies: Can employers discriminate based on their physical attractiveness?”

Religious Discrimination? No Actual Knowledge, No Problem

Author: Brynn Stylinski, Associate Member, University of Cincinnati Law Review

Title VII has prohibited religious discrimination and required accommodation of religious needs in the workplace since 1964. Last year, in EEOC v. Abercrombie and Fitch Stores, Inc., the Tenth Circuit ruled that an employer that denied a Muslim woman employment on the basis of her religious appearance was not liable for religious discrimination under Title VII.[1] However, this ruling is incongruous with Title VII’s purpose as a part of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Tenth Circuit actually misapplied the law at issue. The Tenth Circuit’s ruling encourages employers to act with willful blindness and allows employers to discriminate on the basis of religion. The Supreme Court has granted certiorari in the case, and in order to preserve the integrity of Title VII, should overturn the Tenth Circuit’s ruling and clarify the standard of review to be applied in religious discrimination cases.

Continue reading “Religious Discrimination? No Actual Knowledge, No Problem”