Nursing home refused to allow Muslim worker to wear hijab, government lawsuit alleges

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Residents refused meds, tried to flee secure unit since talking to surveyor, nursing home charges
Residents refused meds, tried to flee secure unit since talking to surveyor, nursing home charges

An Alabama nursing home is being sued after it allegedly refused to allow a Muslim worker to wear a hijab on the job, according to a lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission last week.

Shadescrest Health Care Center hired Tracy Martin as a certified nursing assistant in August 2012, according to the lawsuit. Martin reportedly wore the hijab on Aug. 9 and was told to “remove the head covering or be subject to termination,” according to the government's press release published Monday. Martin filed a discrimination charge with the EEOC and was fired weeks after Shadescrest received notice of the complaint.

The EEOC charges that Martin was fired “in retaliation” to her discrimination complaint and for her attempt to exercise her religious rights, the government alleges.

Shadescrest Health Care Center is a skilled nursing and rehabilitation facility located in Jasper, AL, about 40 miles northwest of Birmingham. The center did not respond to inquiries of McKnight's as of press time. 

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