Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Some Claims Dismissed In Sikh's Employment Discrimination Case Against IRS

In Tagore v. United States, 2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 74235 (SD TX, Aug. 21, 2009), a Texas federal district court dismissed a portion of the claims brought by a former Internal Revenue Service employee who was fired after she insisted on wearing her kirpan-- a ceremonial dagger worn by Sikhs-- in a Houston federal office building. The court held that plaintiff's Title VII employment discrimination claims preempt her claims under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act based on the same facts. It also held that the only proper defendant in her Title VII case is the Secretary of the Treasury. This leaves the Title VII claim plus a claim under RFRA against the Department of Homeland Security and its employees to move forward to trial. (See prior related posting.)