What Are the Department of Labor Guidelines for Religious Expression in Private Work Areas?
In the private work area (an area not regularly open to the public), the DOL allows religious expression to the same extent that non-religious private expression is allowed. Supervisors are allowed to limit religious expression if it interferes with the agency’s ability to do its work properly. However the restriction is not to be of the content or viewpoints of the religious expression. For example the supervisor may ban posters in general, regardless of content, but may not specifically ban or endorse the hanging of religious/anti-religious posters.
What Are the Department of Labor Guidelines for Religious Expression in Official Communications?
Departments and agencies have the right to determine what is appropriate in their official correspondence, this includes email messages. Supervisors may limit correspondence strictly to the business matter being discussed and bar the inclusion of extraneous information religious or otherwise.
What Are the Department of Labor Guidelines for Religious Expression at Office Parties?
Typically many agencies organize end-of-year festivities in December during work hours. Many of these gatherings include decorations like Christmas trees and lights which have been deemed secular symbols by the Supreme Court. However the DOL recognizes the diversity of their employees and encourages supervisors to plan end-of-year functions in an inclusive spirit.
What Are the Department of Labor Guidelines for Religious Expression with Regard to Co-workers?
Religious expression and conversation is permissible in the same way that employees express themselves about non-religious issues. General discussion of religious views in cafeterias and hallways is permitted, as is clothing displaying religious messages.
However if the religious expression is directed at a co-worker and the co-worker asks that it stop, then the employee must refrain from such expression. If the unwelcome behavior continues it may be taken as unlawful religious harassment.
What are the Department of Labor Guidelines for religious expression in public work areas?
In areas accessible to the public it is important that there is no impression that the government itself is endorsing or sponsoring a religion or for that matter prohibiting religion. Favoring or disfavoring a particular religion is also not allowed. However personal religious expression is still allowed in public workplaces if it is clear that it is that of an employee acting in a personal capacity and not on behalf of the government. Employees may wear religious jewelry as long as there is no existing ban on jewelry for safety reasons. Specifically religious art or literature is not to be favored or disfavored in a public work area.