A Chicago dentist is seeking a second, higher legal opinion as he tries to refute the claims of a former Muslim employee, who claims he discriminated against her by forbidding her from wearing her hijab at work.
Dr. Dhiraj Sharma, owner of American Dental Associates, recently filed a petition for common law writ of certiorari in Cook County Circuit Court, asking the court to intervene in his dispute with the Chicago Commission on Human Relations. Named respondents are the Commission on Human Relations, and Mirta Barrera, a former Sharma employee who lodged the complaint against the dentist with the Commission under the city's Human Rights Ordinance.
According to Sharma's petition, he hired Barrera, a Muslim of Hispanic descent, on Jan. 25, 2013, the day she applied for a job as dental assistant. However, according to court documents, Barrera alleged in a Sept. 20, 2013, complaint to the Chicago Commission on Human Relations that Sharma on Jan. 30, 2013, told her not to wear her hijab to work.