(Last updated 2-19-15)
In her summary judgment order, the district judge noted: "It is undisputed that Khan was terminated 'for non-compliance with the company's Look Policy.' Khan's only violation of the Look Policy was the headscarf." (See Docket No. 129 at 14). The court dismissed Abercrombie's argument that "its Look Policy goes to the 'very heart of [its] business model' and thus any requested accommodation to deviate from the Look Policy threatens the company's success." The court held that Abercrombie "only offers unsubstantiated opinion testimony of its own employees to support its claim of undue hardship. The deposition testimony and declarations from Abercrombie witnesses demonstrate their personal beliefs, but are not linked to any credible evidence." (Id. at 16).
The EEOC and Abercrombie resolved both California cases for $71,000 in monetary relief ($48,000 for Ms. Khan and $23,000 for Ms. Banafa). Abercrombie also entered into a three year consent decree which required it adhere to a revised "Accommodation Policy" that includes an appeals process through which an applicant or employee may appeal a denial of a request for religious accommodation to the "Look Policy" and requires Abercrombie to inform applicants during interviews that it may be possible to get an exception to the "Look Policy."