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Jury: MCSO didn’t discriminate vs Muslim officer

PHOENIX — A federal jury has ruled the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office
didn’t discriminate against a Muslim man who claims he lost his job as a jail
detention officer over a dispute about his beard.

Sinan Fazlovic claimed the Sheriff’s Office forced him to shave his facial hair
in order to keep his job despite repeated pleas for religious accommodation.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a religious discrimination lawsuit
against the Sheriff’s Office in May 2009.

The suit said Fazlovic’s superiors made him shave the beard and then later
upheld the decision by saying he would need to be clean shaven for a
self-contained breathing apparatus to fit snugly on his face.

Sheriff’s officials argued they were complying with workplace health laws
governing face masks authorized for use in jail emergencies.


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