Tales of an HR Services Consultant – Day 26: Christmas Decorations are religious discrimination!

Are Christmas decorations religious discrimination?

No! Don’t worry, it’s not political correctness gone mad!

Religious belief is protected by the Equality Act 2010. It doesn’t stop the display of Christmas decorations in the workplace. In fact, it doesn’t stop any traditional customs under religious discrimination.

In any case, the vast majority of Christmas decorations, e.g. tinsel, baubles, fairy lights and trees, are deemed to be secular. They aren’t inherently religious or a requirement of Christianity. Therefore it would be quite difficult (probably impossible) for someone to successfully claim religious discrimination due to “too much tinsel in the office”.

Staff are more likely to be upset by too many Christmas songs and jingles, e.g. over the radio or via a CD. Do be aware that any music played in a workplace is considered to be a public broadcast and, therefore, means that you should have a PPL licence. Flout this rule and you will be breaking the law.

Bah humbug!

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