Meat-plant owner "uncooperative" in Muslim prayer fight

by Kal El on September 15, 2008 · View Comments

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Last week I wrote about JBS Swift & Co. in Colorado not allowing muslim employees extra prayer breaks for iftar (breakfast) during ramadan. Those muslim employees walked off the job, and JBS Swift & Co. suspended them. This week, they stick to their guns over an employee fired last year for doing the same, which of course has terrorist rights group CAIR whining with sand in their vaginas.

A civil-rights group holds little hope that a week-old dispute between Muslim workers and their bosses at a Greeley slaughterhouse will end quickly, based on the company’s recent response in a similar standoff in Nebraska.

A mediation session between Brazilian-owned JBS Swift & Co. and the Council on American-Islamic Relations to discuss issues involving Muslim employees at its Grand Island, Neb., plant ended Wednesday without progress, CAIR officials said.

“They were completely uncooperative,” said Christina Abraham, director of civil rights at CAIR’s office in Chicago, which is handling both Swift disputes.

“Though we’re hopeful, the issue in Greeley may follow the same route and it could take years,” she said.

There was no date to resume the mediation.

It was the first hearing on 20 complaints that CAIR filed with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission over problems Muslim workers say they had with Swift over prayer breaks at the plant last year.

Each complaint is offered mediation before the EEOC investigates, and Wednesday’s was the only session Swift agreed to attend so far, Abraham said.

The case revolved around one of several employees fired for walking off the job in July 2007 over the prayer dispute. CAIR said Swift officials denied firing the worker, Hassan Duwane, and insisted he had quit.

Swift officials have offered no public comment on the Grand Island dispute.

The complaints hinge on incidents where Muslim employees, most of them Somalis, said their religious needs to break for daily prayers were not accommodated. Islam requires practitioners to pray five times daily.

CAIR’s efforts to negotiate a settlement met an impasse when the group tried to discuss daily prayer breaks for the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, Abraham said.

The fifth prayer of the day must be held at sunset during Ramadan, when Muslims fast from sunup to sundown. The fast is broken with the day’s last prayer.

“We anticipated there could be problems with Ramadan, so we attempted to work that out ahead of time,” Abraham said. “We were trying to look to the future and ensure any agreement was sustained.”

That issue is precisely the sticking point in Greeley, where 103 employees were fired Tuesday, just days after Muslim workers walked off the job over break times for prayer during Ramadan.

The workers insisted they needed to pray at sunset and wanted the equivalent of a bathroom break. Workers are allowed breaks during the work shift, which runs from 3 p.m. to midnight, according to a contract between the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 7 union and Swift.

The contract calls for a 30-minute meal break, typically at 9:15 p.m., but management offered to move it to 8 p.m.

“The production lines are stopped whenever there is a meal break,” Swift spokeswoman Tamara Smid said. “They are not stopped for a bathroom break.”

With about 300 Muslim workers out of 1,300 working the shift in Greeley, an en-masse prayer break puts additional stress on the remaining workers, non-Muslim workers have said.

A lunch break earlier than 8 p.m. means employees would be required to work nearly four hours without a break, a dangerous situation on a production line where nearly 400 head of cattle are slaughtered each hour, company officials have said.

So again, we have immigrants coming into OUR country, and expecting us to accomodate them, instead of assimilating into our culture. Yet another case of muslims demanding we obey their customs when visiting a muslim country, and that we obey their customs when they come to ours. Isn’t interfaith dialogue just wonderful!?

Original story can be read in the Denver Post.

Related posts:

  1. Colorado muslims walk out, get suspended by JBS Swift & Co over ramadan breaks
  2. CAIR strangely silent after al-Qaeda trainee pleads guilty to terrorism
  3. CAIR helps muslimah file complaint against Abercrombie and Fitch
  4. McCain supporter angers CAIR, asserts "We will never kneel" CAIR cries foul
  5. GASP! BBC forgets muslim prayer room for Arabic tv channel
  • Liz

    Good for JB Swift. I’m about sick of the double standard.  Let them quit. 

  • http://infidelsarecool.com Philip Saenz

    I now know why Muslim countries are called Third World Countries.  Muslims keep their arses pointing toward the sky while banging their empty heads on the ground for too long when they should be working. 

    I’m glad JBS Swift & Company didn’t cave in.  Who in the hell wants our country to turn into a Third World Country?  I know I don’t.  Besides that, we would have Sharia Law where women would be stoned to death, petty thieves would have their hands and feet cut off, and their eyes gouged out.  Old, ugly, long bearded Muslim lechers would be allowed to marry, actually kidnap, eight and nine year old little girls and then raped. I don’t want to see that either. These old Muslim lechers are actually beasts and children of Satan/Allah.

    Look, you damn stupid Muslims, you can just go to hell.  Go back to your pile of garbage from where you came if you want to stick your arses toward the sky and bang your empty heads on the ground when you should be working.

  • jennyjen

    If they want to pray while they are supposed to work- get a job that allows it and stop bitching! Special rights due to religion- No thank you!

  • ender

    the ones that were recently fired was because they started to riot and vandalize the building before being thrown out.  Initial news reports stated that, then they changed to “the employees walked off the line”.  have to protect the religion of peace’s appearance.

  • Kal

    ender,

    Angry muslims rioted because they didn’t get their way? NO!!!!!!!! That is a lie! It was obviously an Israeli plot, cooked up to make islam look bad :P

  • XD45c

    Good for Swift!!!

    I’m sick to death of the muslims demanding more than equal rights and for making some f’n stick everywhere they go.

    We (the US) need to wake up and look around. Islam is not a religion. It is certainly NOT peaceful. And if we let the cancer take root here, we will only make this war longer and harder.

    Yeah, I said it. This IS a fight with Islam, and it’s not the “radical fringe” of Islam.

    First hand accounts abound, and we would do well to review the facts from authors like Ayaan Hirsi Ali, to mention just one “Infidel” who has shined the light of truth on this dangerous pedophilic cult.

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