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Settles Federal Charges Company Fired Employees for Refusing to Participate in Mandatory Prayer Meetings

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Aurora Renovations and Developments, LLC, doing business as Aurora Pro Services, a North Carolina-based residential home service and repair company, has agreed to pay $50,000 and provide other relief to settle a religious harassment, discrimination, and retaliation lawsuit brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today.

According to the EEOC, since at least June 2020, Aurora Pro Services required all employees to attend daily employer-led Christian prayer meetings. The meetings were conducted by the company owner and included Bible readings, Christian devotionals, and solicitation of prayer requests from employees. Aurora’s owner took roll before some of the meetings and reprimanded employees who did not attend. When…[click here for full article].

Guidance: This article reflects a lack of understanding and awareness of employment laws, regulations, employee rights, and appropriate risk management strategies to mitigate risk and liability for their business.  It is one thing for the leadership to have a desire to share their beliefs with others, what becomes problematic is when you bring a personal matter into the workplace and then force actions and behaviors based on protected characteristics, such as religious beliefs. To avoid this and other employment practices risks, conduct a comprehensive assessment of your employment practices and provide manager and law training to all members of the leadership and management teams.  Be willing to make changes and adjustments and communicate effectively with the workforce.  It only takes one mistake to risk losing a significant amount financially, public reputation and customer/client loss due to these organizational behaviors.

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