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Top Ohio Religious Discrimination Lawyer Response: Can My Boss Make Me Participate In Bible Study?

On Behalf of | Sep 19, 2014 | Religious Discrimination, Wrongful Termination |

Best Ohio Religious Discrimination Attorney Answer: Can my boss force his religion on me? Can my manager fire me for not being religious? What should I do if my job is hostile towards me because I am not “religious enough”? How can I find the best wrongful termination lawyer in Ohio?

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As we have blogged before, forcing employees to take part in religious activities at work is a clear violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and  of Ohio R.C. § 4112.02, as does terminating an employee because they don’t share the same religious beliefs of the employer or their supervisor. But what if you do share the same religion, but just aren’t religious enough for the boss’s preference? Such a claim forms the basis of a religious discrimination lawsuit brought by the former general manager of a CarSense auto dealership located in Mount Holly, New Jersey, after he was fired for not being “outwardly religious enough.”

In his complaint, the former employee, Joseph Haughey, alleges that other general managers kept Bibles in their desks, and would spend time at work studying the Bible. The suit further alleges that on Tuesday nights, the owner of the dealership, Francis McGowan, would lead a Bible study, and employee meetings were typically opened with a prayer that general managers were expected to take turns leading. Haughey also alleges that the McGowan once became angry with him after he did not react to McGowan’s breaking down into tears and saying that he “could not wait for that glorious day” when he would die and “spend eternity in heaven with Jesus” during a employee meeting.

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Two weeks after the meeting, McGowan told the Haughey that while his performance was “outstanding,” he was not acting in the leadership capacity expected of him because he needed to be more outwardly religious. A week later, Haughey was fired. This looks like a clear case of wrongful termination to me.

For its part, the CarSense says that Haughey was fired for yelling at employees. However, Haughey has claimed the reason CarSense has given is mere pretext. Because this case was just filed last week, the Court has not had an opportunity to weigh in on the dispute.

While Haughey’s claims have been brought under New Jersey law, like both Ohio law and Title VII, the basic premise is the same: an employer cannot discriminate “because of” an employee’s religion. Certainly, firing someone because they aren’t religious enough meets this definition.

If you feel that you are being discriminated or harassed based on your religion or religious beliefs or that you were wrongfully terminated because of you are Jewish, Muslim, Mormon, Hindu or any other religion, the best course of action you can take is to call the right attorney at 866-797-6040 to schedule a free and confidential consultation. At Spitz, The Employee’s Law Firm, you will meet with a religious discrimination attorney, who will be able to tell you what your legal rights are and the best way to protect them.


The materials available at the top of this religious discrimination blog and at this employment law website are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. If you are still asking, “How do I …”, “What should I do …,” “Can my boss discriminate against me because I’m (Jewish/Muslim/Mormon/Hindu)?” or “I was fired for my religious beliefs.  The answer to “What can I do?”, is to contact an Ohio attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular religious discrimination or other employment law issue or problem. Use and access to this employment law website or any of the links contained within the site do not create an attorney-client relationship. The legal opinions expressed at or through this site are the opinions of the individual lawyer and may not reflect the opinions of Spitz, The Employee’s Law Firm, Brian Spitz, or any individual attorney.

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