Chipotle is hit with federal lawsuit ‘after supervisor of Kansas restaurant ripped Muslim worker’s HIJAB off her head after she refused his calls for to see her hair’

Chipotle is being sued by a federal company accusing it of non secular harassment and retaliation after a supervisor at a Kansas location of the the restaurant chain forcibly eliminated an worker’s hijab, a headband worn by some Muslim ladies.

In a lawsuit filed earlier this week the Equal Employment Alternative Fee alleged how in 2021, an assistant supervisor at a Chipotle in Lenexa, Kansas, Kevin Silva Garcia, repeatedly harassed the worker, Areej Saifan, by asking her to point out him her hair, regardless of her refusal. 

After a number of weeks, the harassment culminated in him grabbing and partially eradicating her hijab, in line with the grievance.

The supervisor’s ‘offensive and relentless requests’ that she take away her hijab, and his try to bodily take it off, had been ‘unwelcome, intentional, extreme, based mostly on faith, and created a hostile working setting based mostly on faith,’ the grievance alleges.

Chipotle finally fired Garcia whereas Saifan additionally filed a report back to Lenexa Police.

Areej Saifan

Moussa Elbayoumy

Areej Saifan, left obtained the assistance of the he Council on American-Islamic Relations in Kansas to assist report the incident. Moussa Elbayoumy, proper, of the CAIR Kansas stated he helped the teenager submit the complain to the U.S. Equal Employment Alternative Fee

The quick meals chain’s chief company affairs officer, Laurie Schalow, stated the corporate encourages workers to report issues, together with by way of an nameless hotline.

‘We now have a zero tolerance coverage for discrimination of any type and we’ve got terminated the worker in query,’ she stated in an announcement.

The harassment started in July 2021, when the supervisor, Garcia, started asking Saifan, who was 19 on the time, to take away her hijab as a result of he wished to see her hair.

Based on the grievance, Garcia demanded to see her hair at the very least 10 occasions over the course of 1 month. 

She refused every time, saying she wore it due to her non secular beliefs.

Saifan refused to remove her hijab on every occasion, saying she wore it because of her religious beliefs

Saifan refused to take away her hijab every time, saying she wore it due to her non secular beliefs

Saifan detailed her experience to the EEOC. She has since resigned from the Chipotle

Saifan detailed her expertise to the EEOC. She has since resigned from the Chipotle

Saifan then complained to a different supervisor that the incidents made her uncomfortable, however no additional motion was taken towards the supervisor, the grievance stated. 

One night time throughout closing in August 2021, Garcia allegedly reached out and pulled her hijab partially off her head.

The next day, Saifan gave her two weeks’ discover. 

Chipotle did not schedule her for any shifts throughout these two weeks regardless that different non-Muslim workers who submitted their discover continued to be scheduled for work throughout that point, the grievance alleged.

The lawsuit claims Chipotle violated federal civil rights regulation defending workers and job candidates from discrimination based mostly on faith, race, ethnicity, intercourse and nationwide origin.

Chipotle ultimately fired the manager while Saifan, pictured, filed a report to Lenexa Police

Chipotle finally fired the supervisor whereas Saifan, pictured, filed a report back to Lenexa Police

Chipotle fired the assistant manager at their franchise in Lenexa, Kansas, pictured

Chipotle fired the assistant supervisor at their franchise in Lenexa, Kansas, pictured

In its go well with, the Equal Employment Alternative Fee stated it desires Chipotle to institute insurance policies that present equal employment alternatives for workers of all religions and pay damages to the worker.

Saifan stated she felt the necessity to report the incident to spotlight the supervisor’s alleged offensive actions and let others know that this was not one thing they need to do. 

‘I do not need this to occur to me or particularly anybody else. In fact, you understand, it isn’t solely about being respectful to Muslim coworkers, to any faith, anyone, everybody has totally different non secular beliefs and selections. And you need to respect that you need to accommodate to that.’ 


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