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March 9, 2011

Weekly Wednesday HR Acronym – BFOQ

In the world of HR, it is difficult to speak a sentence without including an acronym.   So why not celebrate Wednesdays by dedicating a blog to an HR acronym?  My bet is we won’t exhaust my current list by this time next year.  And if we have, I am pretty certain the government will have added a few more to keep our lives interesting.  Here’s this week’s Wednesday HR acronym and definition:

What’s a BFOQ?

 A BFOQ (bona fide occupational qualification) is an exception to an EEO law and allows preferential treatment under rare circumstances if reasonably necessary to the normal operation of the business. Therefore an employer could show that a particular job requires that an employee be of a certain sex, religion, age, or national origin. There is no BFOQ for race and color. Note however, that the BFOQ is a very limited exception and is interpreted extremely narrowly. Examples where a BFOQ might be appropriate include a requirement that a bathroom attendant be of a certain sex or that an employee in a religious organization who performs “religious” work is of a particular religion.


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