3 Reasons to Approve Religious Holiday Time Off Requests


Depending on the size of your organization, holiday scheduling can be a bit of a nightmare. As the weather warms up, more requests are sure to follow, but how do you decided who gets to use their time off and who doesn’t? Hopefully, you’ll put some serious consideration into approving them all, and here’s why…

1. You May Be Legally Required To

While you may not know the reason why every employee is requesting time away, it’s worthwhile for you to find out. In most cases, you’re legally required to provide religious accommodations for your employees. Although there are some exceptions, such as when a business will suffer undue hardships, the cases are very difficult to prove and you could wind up in hot water with the courts for religious discrimination if the accommodations are not made.

  • The legal requirements apply to workplaces with 15 or more employees.
  • Employers are required to give an employee the day off to observe a religious holiday, but pay is only required when the employee has paid time off available.
  • Employers still have to give a person the day off for religious observations, even if the employee is not entitled to pay for the day.

2. Religious Diversity Can’t Exist without Flexibility

If you can’t accommodate every request for time off, you should make sure that anyone requesting a religious holiday off gets the time they need. When you take religious events into account and schedule your staff accordingly, or at least honor requests for the time off, it’s much easier to build a diverse team that will lead your company to victory.

3. Positivity and Production Increase with Time Off

People simply enjoy working for companies that allow people to flex their schedules. If positivity is part of your workplace culture, allowing people to take time off when they request it not only creates a better environment, but makes employees more productive.

Start Increasing Diversity and Improving Workplace Culture

We’re hosting a series of diversity sessions, to help you create the perfect culture fit team, increase morale, and boost productivity throughout your company. Each of our special events focuses on a unique aspect of workplace diversity, so you can make sure your company is not only compliant with the laws, but is also creating a positive and inclusive atmosphere. Join us for “Boot Camp for New Managers, Supervisors, and HR Professionals” on March 29 and “Tips & Tools for Designing, Developing, and Delivering Diversity that Hit The Mark” on April 27-28 in Washington, D.C.

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