The Supreme Court said Friday it would hear a religious liberty dispute over the U.S. Postal Service’s requirement that workers deliver Amazon packages on Sunday, in violation of their observance of Sunday as the Sabbath.
The case was brought by Gerald Groff, a Christian man who worked for the postal service since 2012. He resigned in 2019 when his Holtwood, Pennsylvania, office said it was unable to accommodate his observance of Sunday as a day for worship and rest because of its obligation to deliver packages for Amazon.
Prior to that, the USPS had skipped him in rotation, but his lawyers say he increasingly faced punishment short of firing.
“Facing termination, Groff resigned and sued USPS for failing to reasonably accommodate his religious practice,” the lawyers told the high court.
The lower court had sided with the USPS, reasoning that the small office was unduly burdened by honoring Mr. Groff’s accommodation.
He took his challenge to the high court, and it announced Friday it will review his legal battle.
It took at least four justices to vote in favor of hearing the case.
The federal government had urged the justices not to take up the dispute, arguing the Holtwood office was so small that skipping Mr. Groff in Sunday rotation sometimes meant the postmaster himself had to deliver packages on Sundays.
“That is hardly ‘normal,’” the solicitor general argued in the government’s filing.
The justices will decide what level of burden — if any — an employer can place on an employee’s religious practice so as not to run afoul of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
The case is Groff v. DeJoy.