The End of Sikh Discrimination in the Workplace

Across the world Sikhs experience unemployment due to discrimination Sikhs are a minority in every country in which they...

There are over 250,000 Sikhs in the United States, most are well-educated and form one of the strongest minority groups in the country. Many live in California, Florida, Illinois, and the Northeast but Sikhs can be found all over the country. As for work, Sikhs fill positions all over the work spectrum ranging from doctors, teachers, businessmen and women, to members of the federal government. Despite all these accomplishments, some Sikhs are still discriminated against in the workplace for their appearance and religious beliefs.

Where Do Sikhs Work 

The first Sikhs came to Central California in the early 1900s and worked on farms, becoming some of the hardest workers in the state. Today, however, Sikhs work in all sectors of the economy from truck driving to top-level businessmen and CEOs. Sikhs are a strong part of the workforce and contribute in all realms. Sikhs apply for job positions in all parts of the United States, in any role despite the reactions they sometimes get from employers or other employees.  

Across the world, Sikhs experience unemployment due to discrimination Sikhs are a minority in every country in which they live, making life more difficult. In India, Sikhs in urban areas have some of the highest unemployment according to the most recent Indian census. In the United Kingdom, Sikhs are treated as an "invisible minority group" which constantly faces hate crimes due to the confusion between Sikhs, Muslims, and Arabs. In Australia, Sikhs can face joblessness and lack of food because of the hostile environment for minorities. In the States, Trump's America is also creating a new hostile environment for Sikhs, as employers can sometimes feel the need to ignore the employment laws set in place to protect Sikhs. 

Sikh Workplace Protections 

Sikh employment in the United States is protected by anti-discrimination law. Many Sikhs worry about having to change their appearance for their employer, but this is not true. Founded in 1965, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is tasked with protecting the rights of minorities within the workplace. The Commission ruled favorably that Sikhs have the right to bring their kirpan to their workplace, and any employer saying otherwise in out of line. So by law, an employer can not force Sikhs to remove their kirpan, remove their turban, or shave their beard as it is protected by American religious freedom. 

Sikhs in the Workplace

Sikhs work all over the world in every position imaginable. It is unfortunate that the world can not always see the hardworking spirit of employees and choose to focus on appearance differences. Sikhs can and do work in a wide variety of places and jobs. Protections do exist in many countries such as the United States to protect Sikhs from workplace harassment and discrimination. Sikhs are a people group dedicated not only to faith but all aspects of life. In retrospect, there is no difference between a Sikh worker and any other worker. Respect for Sikh beliefs is fundamental to an American work environment and cannot be legally discriminated againt. 

If You Have a Problem in the Workplace

Contact the Sikh Coalition through their website or call them directly at +1 212-655-3095

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