UPS Hit with Discrimination Suit for Refusing Sabbath Request

September 20, 2007 ( - The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has filed a discrimination suit in federal court charging United Parcel Service, Inc. (UPS) with not accommodating an employee's religious beliefs by refusing his request to not work on the Sabbath.

The EEOC complaint was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee on behalf of Joseph Kosloski, a package delivery driver who worked for the company for 17 years at UPS’ Bartlett, Tennessee facility.

In December 2000, Kosloski notified UPS he was a member of the United Church of God, whose beliefs include a prohibition against work from sunset Friday to sunset Saturday. He was accommodated from 2000 to 2005, but was refused this arrangement when management of the facility changed in 2005, according to the suit.

Management advised Kosloski to “finish his route regardless of his religious beliefs or he would be terminated for job abandonment,” the complaint said.

A medical condition laterprevented Kosloski from driving, at which point he was offered a non-driving job that conflicted with his religious beliefs. Kosloski was forced to take short-term disability leave for his medical condition, instead of performing a full-time non-driving job, to avoid violating his religious beliefs, the suit said.

Among other things, the EEOC is asking that UPS give Kosloski back pay with interest.

The EEOC suit is here .