A federal agency has sued a New York customer service provider after allegations the company forced employees to pray, thank god for their jobs and say "I love you" to managers and colleagues at work.

Those who protested were allegedly fired.

The Long Island-based United Health Programs of America and its parent company, Cost Containment Group, is alleged to have required workers to practice a spiritual belief system called Onionhead while on the job.

This was a violation of their civil and religious rights, the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission said in the complaint.