How to support your Muslim coworkers who are fasting during Ramadan - Deepstash
How to support your Muslim coworkers who are fasting during Ramadan

How to support your Muslim coworkers who are fasting during Ramadan

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Millions of Muslims worldwide have been observing Ramadan, during which strict fasting is observed from sunrise to sunset.

The exact date of fasting depends on the interpretation of whether one follows the Islamic calendar or visibly sees the new moon.

For Muslims, Ramadan means abstaining from food and drink during the regular 9-to-5 workday.


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Don't be afraid to ask questions

Don't be afraid to ask questions

Many non-Muslims don't know much about Ramadan. However, most Muslims welcome questions from colleagues and friends.

Being open about Ramadan can also help employees plan their meetings when fasting Muslims have more energy.


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Managers can privately ask if their direct reports would like any special accommodations

Ramadan is traditionally a social holiday: Muslims break their fast with family and friends, and visit mosques more often for additional prayers.

Working remotely might make flexible work hours easier as fasting Muslims lose energy as the day progresses. While Muslims don't expect any extra accommodation, it really feels good to be recognized.


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Wishing a coworker "Happy Ramadan" isn't offensive

Wishing a coworker "Happy Ramadan" isn't offensive

Most Muslims use the Arabic translation "Ramadan Mubarak" to greet each other. You can also say "Ramadan Kareem." It means "have a generous Ramadan."


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If you notice a coworker isn't fasting, don't publicly ask why

Muslim women don't fast when they are on their periods and would prefer not to have this pointed out in public. There are also other reasons why Muslims don't fast, such as illness or travel.

Don't apologise for eating or drinking in front of a colleague observing Ramadan. The point of the month is that it should be challenging. They don't want to feel guilty or awkward.

However, don't make jokes about your colleague not having coffee or eating lunch, either. It can appear offensive.


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Automotive engineer

Sylvia Wade's ideas are part of this journey:

Ramadan: Islam's holiest month

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