The United Parcel Service Inc. has agreed to pay $4.9 million to settle a class discrimination lawsuit in which the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission claimed that the company did not accommodate certain religious practices as required by federal law.

According to a news release announcing the settlement, UPS, headquartered in Atlanta,  prohibits male employees in a supervisory or customer contact position, which includes delivery drivers, from wearing beards or growing hair below collar length. The EEOC claimed that since at least January 2005, UPS would not hire or promote applicants whose religious practices of wearing beards or long hair conflicted with its appearance policy and wouldn’t provide reasonable accommodation for them at its facilities throughout the United States. The EEOC further alleged that UPS would keep employees with beards or long hair for religious reasons away from customer contact positions.

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