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Religion in the Workplace and the World

In the face of globalization, changing economic realities, demographic shifts, and religious pluralization, increasing awareness regarding religion in the workplace has proved to help create a harmonious professional environment. This field of study is attracting growing interest from academics, management scholars, human resources professionals, legal experts, and the media.

Requests for religious accommodation in the workplace are rising. Claims of discrimination based on religion are second only to sexual harassment. Managers and supervisors need to understand how to balance the various rights and obligations of religious practices, observances, and beliefs among employees.

In order to help professionals in East Tennessee achieve that balance, the Department of Religious Studies hosted a daylong workshop on October 24, 2011 that offered the following:

  • An overview of the legal framework related to religion in the workplace
  • A basic understanding of the way that diverse religious practices may manifest themselves in the workplace
  • Guidance on how and when to reasonably accommodate those expressions

In May and June 2012, department head Professor Rosalind I. J. Hackett conducted workshops on religious diversity in the workplace around Tennessee through UT's Institute for Public Service. She has also spoken on religion and civility to the UT Libraries Diversity Committee’s Lunch and Learn series and to the UT Veterinary School on religious holidays.  If you have questions regarding consultancy or possible training sessions, please see our information sheet and contact Professor Hackett at or by phone at (865) 974-6980.

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