On Wednesday in Albany, NY the New York State Assembly voted and unanimously passed bill A864-A, which makes discrimination against religious attire worn in the workplace illegal.
The bill was originally proposed by Assemblyman David Weprin in response to cases and concerns from religious communities who had been discriminated against in the workplace for their religious grooming and or clothing. Senator James Sanders Jr., a prime supporter, also proposed the bill to the New York State Senate.
Senator Sanders also commented in the press release saying, “Senator Sanders stated, “In order to promote understanding and tolerance in our state, it is imperative that people of all ethnicities and religions are treated equally in the workplace.”
In a press release Weprin stated that, “people should not have to making a choice between working to provide for their families and observing their religion.”
The legislation protects both uniformed employees along with all other workers who have to dress according to their religion. The bill also amends the civil rights law and the labor law, both prohibit discrimination against religious attire and facial hair.
In the press release Assemblyman Weprin praised this new bill and the manner in which it was passes in the State Assembly. He said, “Assemblyman Weprin stated, “Through the unanimous passing of the Religious Garb bill in the New York State Assembly, we celebrate our state’s long standing commitment to promoting religious freedom and equality for all people.” He also said, “I’m very proud that we unanimously passed this bill to ensure that all New Yorkers will be able to freely wear religious garments in the workplace such as hijabs, turbans and beards without fear of persecution. Let us be a state that continues to promote diversity, leadership and service.”
Religious leaders are very supportive of the bill and agree that though it maybe long overdue it means a lot to New York’s religious communities. Rabbi Israel Rubin, the Religious Garb bill calling for equal employment opportunities for all New Yorkers regardless of religious attire and facial grooming.” Mr. Gurdev Singh Kang, President of the Sikh Cultural Society stated, “New York State prides itself in being a place that embraces diversity in which all people are treated equally under the law regardless of their race, religion or ethnicity.