With the arrival of Ramadan, the first week of the blessed month can be difficult in terms of adjusting to a different eating and sleeping schedule. Most Muslims manage to be back on track by the second week. For others, it may take longer or it may be more difficult.
At work, this can raise questions about productivity and concentration. If you feel it is helpful, inform your boss before Ramadan begins about the coming changes. Every employer is different, and while many, if not most, are very understanding and make allowances for Muslim employees, others may use it as an excuse for discrimination.
If you feel your boss or supervisor is someone who will understand your situation, consider sending this sample letter to them before Ramadan begins. You can adjust the letter according to your needs.
Monday April 23, 2018
YOUR NAME AND DEPARTMENT
Re: Month of fasting, Ramadan, which begins May 15
Dear (NAME OF BOSS):
You have always been a supportive boss, and I very much appreciate all you have done for me. I also appreciate the respect for all cultures and religions here at (NAME OF YOUR COMPANY).
I am writing to inform you about the upcoming month of Ramadan, a month of fasting for Muslims all around the world.
Ramadan is the ninth month of the lunar Islamic calendar. This year, it is expected to begin on May 15. Muslims are required to fast during this month. This entails avoiding all food and drink between dawn and sunset each day during the month, which lasts 29 or 30 days.
Despite the physical challenges, Ramadan is a time of joy, spiritual fulfillment, and greater God-consciousness for Muslims. It also makes us more sensitive of our duty to share our blessings with those in need.
I have fasted for over a decade, even during work hours here at (NAME OF YOUR COMPANY). Although this has not affected my productivity on the job, it has not been easy. Avoiding food and drink can make one sluggish during some parts of the day.
With this in mind, I would like to make three small requests that can make the work hours easier for me, as well as other Muslim employees fasting in Ramadan at (NAME OF YOUR COMPANY):
Giving fasting employees the option to come in earlier and leave earlier. Or if they prefer, arrive a little later and leave later
Set aside an empty room where employees can pray and/or take a short nap during lunch break
Schedule work meetings in the late morning or later in the afternoon (e.g. 3 pm or afterward), when employees tend to be less tired
Thank you for your time and attention. I look forward to hearing from you about this. Please feel free to email or call me at (YOUR NUMBER).