Diwali in lockdown: five tips to accommodate for employees celebrating the festival
The 12th of November marked the beginning of the five-day long festival of Diwali for Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and some Buddhists. Hindus alone are the third largest religious group in Britain, so make yourself aware of things you can do to increase your employees’ happiness with you.
- Most families celebrate Diwali as the sun sets, so you shouldn’t have many staff requesting time off work. However, be wary that some may do, and you should accommodate for them to the best of your ability in line with the Equality Act of 2010.
- Some employees may choose to fast during Diwali, so understand that this may be the reason why they seem tired or distracted. Many also celebrate the festival by eating only vegetarian food, so we suggest having vegetarian food if you’re having Zoom dinners!
- Make it a sweet time for them! On Divali, some of the most exquisite sweets are eaten. Some of these include boondi laddoo (deep-fried balls of flour rolled with seeds/nuts and spices, then soaked in a sweet syrup) and jalebi (a batter of flour and saffron, shaped into spirals and fried, then soaked in sugar syrup). Giving sweets as presents is a popular custom and your colleagues would appreciate receiving these. For more on sweets, click here.
- The day after Diwali is the Hindu new year, when many like to sort through their financial affairs, so be aware and support your employees and colleagues with this.
- Finally, planning is essential! Make sure all your colleagues are aware of Diwali so the festive period can go without a hitch, and it can be a time of celebration and jubilation, rather than tribulation.
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