Non-Christians Need Not Apply

A 20-store Subway operation may find itself in legal trouble after sending a letter to several churches in Charleston, West Virginia saying they’re seeking Christian employees. That is a pretty clear violation of state and federal laws that forbid discrimination on the basis of religion.

Kermit Ball, the director of operations for Hammond Group Inc., which owns the Subways, sent the letter, publishing employment opportunities at the restaurants. It was sent to at least four churches and congregations in the Charleston and Huntington areas.

The letter, and subsequent statements from Ball, seem to imply that Hammond Group Inc. would prefer to hire Christian employees, finding them more honest.

The letter, in part, reads: “Due to changing times, we are looking for good honest people. If you have anyone in your congregation in need of a job, or new career, please have them contact us at the address provided above. We are looking for sandwich artists, shift managers, assistant managers and supervisers. The Hammond Group owns and operates 20 Subway restaurants. We are a Christian based company and in need of Christian employees.”

When asked about the letter, Ball reiterated its points.

“Robbery and theft in stores is really, really high and we’re trying to find honest people to run registers,” Ball said. “I’m not elaborating on anything, our owners are Christians.”

Absolutely not allowed, under either state or federal law. You can’t state a preference for hiring employees of a particular religion, race, gender or any other category listed in the law.

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  • matty1

    “Robbery and theft in stores is really, really high and we’re trying to find honest people to run registers”

    And you thought of Christians?

  • Rev. BigDumbChimp

    No christians in jails. nope.

  • timberwoof

    Apparently he thinks that the employees responsible are not Christians.

  • Alverant

    Libertarians wouldn’t have a problem with it. They’d say “Why would you want to work for a company that doesn’t like non-christians?” (I know because that’s what they’ve said on similar issues.)

    That last paragraph is funny. “Theft is high” and “our owners are christian” that would contradict their claim that christians are more honest.

    Subway gave me stomach problems before. Now I have another reason never to go back.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1468751142 Kevin

    @4: Not all Subways. Just this 20-shop franchise group.

    You too can own a Subway store, if you’d like — the franchise fee is $15,000 and overall opening costs can be under $100,000. Or Wendy’s or a bazillion other types of fast-food restaurants.

    But I agree that I tend to shy away from places that are overtly “Christian”. There’s a Wendy’s near me with Christian rock playing all the time — ugh. Won’t go there. It’s off-putting. But I do patronize Wendy’s elsewhere, primarily because of their ongoing corporate support for adoption and fostering organizations. And the food is quick and tasty.

  • eric

    @3 and @4 – yeah, I had a similar thought. You’ve got a predominantly Christian workforce, and a theft problem. So your solution is to selectively recruit more Christians. Talk about ignoring the data.

  • busterggi

    How did a 20 store chain in W. Virginia manage to staff all those store w/o hiring Christians to begin with? Its friggin’ W. Virginia!

  • Larry

    Corporate Subway: Your response?

  • Synfandel

    Due to changing times, we are looking for good honest people.

    Not like the evil, crooked people they used to look for.

  • sqlrob

    Apparently he thinks that the employees responsible are not Christians.

    I’ll bet they’re not even Scotsmen.

  • Alverant

    @Kevin

    OK, then how about boycotting Subway due to the lack of quality control in who they sell franchises to?

    Their sandwiches still make me sick so I won’t go to any of them.

  • Alverant
  • justawriter

    I think the worst is the small-town midwest chain Pizza Ranch. They are, to quote their “mission statement” a “business ministry” whose “vision” is “To glorify God by positively impacting the world we live in.” It gave me the heebie jeebies just to walk in there, but when your dining options are severely limited by your location, you have to make sacrifices.

  • Alverant

    @13

    I hear you. When I visit my parents and want to take the interstate the only convenient place to stop for a break is a tollway Oasis. The only meal options are Subway, McDonalds, and Panda Express. The PE can’t be eaten in the car, Subs make me ill, so I have the crowded McDs. At that point in the trip I need to stretch my legs and clear my head so what else can I do?

  • eric

    At that point in the trip I need to stretch my legs and clear my head so what else can I do?

    Get out, stretch your legs, and eat your home-packed lunch?

    I admit that in your situation, I would (and have) gone for the french fries rather than packing an apple and snack for the trip. So mote, meet beam. But still, its worth pointing out that most of us are rarely forced by circumstance to give our business to these places. Its usually our own laziness or lack of pre-planning (mine included) that puts us in these situations.

  • colnago80

    Re alverant @ #12

    The fact that his article was taken from the Daily Mail does not inspire confidence.

  • tbp1

    Sandwich artists?

    Really.

    Sandwich artists?

  • timberwoof

    I think understand the Daily Mai article. They’re saying that if you choose to eat the sandwiches with the meats with the highest fat content, you’ll be eating a lot of fat. The disgusting outrage!

    I think there’s no point in boycotting a Subway in Sunnyvale over what some jerk district manager did in East Dogbite. However, boycotting all Subways worldwide because the corporate headquarters failed to issue a pleasing press release, send corrective orders to their franchises, and have that district manager shot, all before Elevenses … that seems reasonable, yes?

  • naturalcynic

    Why not hijack the worker bees at Chick-fil-a?

  • matty1

    @12 Don’t worry about the age of that article the Mail has been recycling the same few since about 1885.

    “Immigrants destroying everything”

    “House price shock”

    and the perennial favourite

    “…could cause cancer”

  • carlie

    I’m pretty sure that Mail article on Subway was just a long way of saying “Ew, we’re so much better than Americans”. Nothing about that bore any resemblance to any Subway I’ve eaten at.

  • raven

    “Robbery and theft in stores is really, really high…

    I doubt this is even a true statement.

    Fundie xians always lie. It’s one of their three main sacraments.

    I’d never trust a fundie xian. All I ever got from them was death threats. And all they got from me is a forward to the FBI.

  • John Hinkle

    The Hammond Group owns and operates 20 Subway restaurants.

    Restaurants?

  • Georgia Sam

    I almost hope they succeed at hiring a 100% Christian workforce. Imagine their chagrin when they discover that thievery is as common as ever. Maybe worse.

  • Alverant

    @24 Then they wouldn’t have hired a “true christian” TM workforce as they wanted. There would have been some phony christians who lied on their applications.

    @15 I guess when most people travel taking a home-packed lunch feels like it’s defeating the purpose. It’s like going to a concert and listening to a CD of the band. Besides the oasis in question is half empty. Another restaurant could open up there easily offering a better alternative.

  • cry4turtles

    I spend 45 minutes every morning packing 2-3 meals to eat on the road. It takes planning and effort, but anyone can do it. It’s THE best thing that I do for myself. Fuck Subway, McCdees, Wendy and her henchmen, etc.

  • exdrone

    “Mr. Ball? I have a Rev. Creflo Dollar on line 1. He says he’s heard that you’re looking for a Christian to help you concerning theft and robbery and he has a few suggestions.”

  • lordshipmayhem

    I think the problem they’re having with theft just might be traceable to employees who think they can be forgiven their thefts by just asking their invisible friend to forgive them.

    Perhaps if they upped the rationality quotient a smidgen with their next hires?

  • stubby

    @13

    I had no idea Pizza Ranch was like that. I live in rural Minnesota and there are 3 of them within 20 miles. Now I know to avoid them. Thanks for the info.

  • sezme

    @eric (15) … or lack of pre-planning (mine included) …

    I’ve always wondered what the difference is between “planning” and “pre-planning”.

  • francesc

    @28 well, people are pretty good at rationalizing, even rational ones. I’m thieving a little bit because they don’t pay me enough, because they don’t need it, because my boss is an ass, because the food is being wasted anyway… I don’t think you need to be a christian, either.

    “The letter […] seem to imply that Hammond Group Inc. would prefer to hire Christian employees”

    As in sending it to churches weren’t enough? I guess they are not looking for clever managers

  • oranje

    @5: There’s a Cousin’s/Figaro that I’ve stopped in before that’s like that. Christian rock blaring and Fox News on a television. It’s a rather nice place, but I can’t take the religio-agitprop while I’m trying to eat.

  • http://polrant@blogspot.com democommie

    @26:

    I often do the same thing when I’m planning a trip of several hours. The only problem is that I usuall eat the first one before I get to the Thruway on ramp and the next two shortly thereafter.

    Back when I could still afford to visit other people I would often fly on Southwest which airline pioneered the “Bataan Deathmarch In-flight Nutrition Program”. I would make two very nice sammis on whole grain bread with free range bologna and gormay organic Miracle Whip. Then, about two hours into a three + hour flight, I would open my little “personal item” and haul out this whompin’ sammi and proceed to eat it while tears of xstatic gluttony rolled down my chubby little cheeks. The person sitting next to me would ALWAYS say, “Gosh, that looks good.”. At that point I would offer them the OTHER sammi–for $7–and I’d throw in chips and an apple.

    Oh, before I forget. Eating at Subway (or most other fast food outlets) is like having “spite sex”. It feels good for a few minutes and then you hate yourself for a while.

  • eric

    @25:

    @24 Then they wouldn’t have hired a “true christian” TM workforce as they wanted. There would have been some phony christians who lied on their applications.

    And that might be more truth than No True Scotsman Fallacy. Advertising that you want to hire ‘honest christian workers’ is just begging con artists and criminals to apply. They are going to correctly interpret that to mean that you are less likely to do any sort of thorough background check on an applicant if that applicant appears to be highly religious.

    @15 I guess when most people travel taking a home-packed lunch feels like it’s defeating the purpose.

    Indeed, I’m guilty of seeing a road trip as an opportunity/excuse to break with good eating habits. Nevertheless, my point is that not frequenting such businesses does not automatically lead to fasting on the trip; there are more than just those two options.

  • John Phillips, FCD

    matty1 #20 said

    …and the perennial favourite

    “…could cause cancer”

    and not forgetting their other perennial favourite, some time later the exact same item will likely cure cancer.

  • reasonbe

    “I’m a Christian Sandwich Artist! I found god’s match for me.”

  • http://aceofsevens.wordpress.com Ace of Sevens

    It’s possible regular church-goers are more honest than the population at large, even if self-identified Christians as a whole aren’t. Keep in mind most Christians rarely go to church except for weddings, funerals and holidays. I’m not aware of any evidence this is the case, just saying you can’t generalize from info about Christians to church attendees.

    Plus, this is really blatantly illegal either way. Also, most Subways open at 10 am on Sunday. He’d better recruit some Adventists for those shifts. (They can work with meat, just not eat it, IIRC.)