As an employee, you have the right under Federal law, to practice your religion. That means if you need to leave work early for religious reasons, or are unable to work on the weekend, your employer must make every effort to accommodate your schedule, unless it would pose an undue hardship ( under Federal law). Furthermore, employers cannot discriminate against one particular religious group while favoring another. There must be a sound business reason for business decisions—discriminatory practices violate both Federal and California Law.
Religious discrimination can take many forms: members of one religion may be harassed because their faith is unpopular. The harassment has to rise to the level of ‘severe and debilitating’. Moreover, if a supervisor notices discriminatory conduct and takes no action to stop it, the employer’s firm may be held liable for creating a hostile work environment.
In 2013, California expanded the protections against religious discrimination by enacting The California Workplace Religious Freedom Act. It gives employees the right to wear religious garments, and follow grooming standard that accord with their religion. The employer must make these accommodations unless they can prove that they would pose a substantial hardship or expense. This raises the burden on employers under State law; the Federal law only imposes a showing that accommodation would be more than a ‘minimal’ expense.
Employees have the right to observe their religion and have their reasonable requests granted by the employer. That includes schedule adjustments, the wearing of clothing not worn by other employees. The dress code should be flexible enough to accommodate these differences as long as they do not interfere with safety. There must be a sound business reason, or the courts will find the practice violates public policy and constitutes religious discrimination.