Sikh TSA agent wins $30,000 suit over religious wristband

WASHINGTON — A Sikh security officer at New York’s largest airport won a $30,000 settlement against the Department of Homeland Security, which had forbidden him from displaying his kara — a wristband that Sikhs wear to remind them of the divine.

Kulwinder Singh called it a violation of his religious rights, and took his case to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The EEOC determined that the Transportation Security Administration was wrong to have Singh hide his kara under a long-sleeved shirt, or not wear it at all.

The case alleged discrimination on the basis of Singh’s religion under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. The EEOC decided the case in March and required the TSA to allow employees to wear the kara freely, and to post a notice of the violation by mid-June.

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