SHAFAQNA – Religion is increasingly subject to workplace jokes as gender-based humor has become taboo, according to a study by pollsters ComRes.
Up to 1 million workers have been mocked for their beliefs in their place of employment, according to polling data.
The study suggested that many believers were victims of “lower-level exclusion” because they did not deem the mocking serious enough to report.
“Some people told us they felt uncomfortable about mentioning that they pray,” Katie Harrison, head of the ComRes Faith Research Centre, told the Telegraph.
“Or we heard of people feeling upset that religion was the butt of jokes in a workplace where people have become much more aware about making disparaging comments about gender or disability.”
Harrison said some workers felt they could not divulge that they prayed or had visited a place of worship because they thought they would be laughed at.
“In our office, everyone is very respectful of minorities and would never be disparaging about women or people with disabilities, but when it comes to religion it’s fair game,” one person who responded to the survey said.
“People can be very insulting, especially when they express it through humor.”
Employees also said they felt bosses did not know how to deal with faith matters like religious festivals and events.
“Many HR managers say they make provision for employees to pray at work and observe holy days and religious festivals, but workers say that’s not happening,” Harrison said.