A Muslim who applied for a driver helper position with UPS in Rochester, N.Y., was told he would have to shave the beard he wore as part of his religious practice in order to qualify for the position. "God would understand," if he trimmed it, the applicant was told, and if he chose not to, he could apply for a lower paying job.

That allegation and others like it are included in a lawsuit filed against UPS by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on Wednesday in federal court in Brooklyn, N.Y. that accuses the shipping giant of "violat[ing] federal law by discriminating against applicants and employees around the country whose religious practices conflicted with its uniform and appearance policy."

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