Its been governed under a Federally Mediated Settlement that these 9 workers, and any employees who wish to pray and NOT HANDLE pork, are allowed to do so, if it is because of religious reasons.
Now, before you get your feathers flocking... hear me out.
I think if you want to pray due to your religious beliefs, thats your right. If you want to do it at work, and take time outside of work (i.e. not on your specific breaks which you are entitled to) then I believe its a different sort of cause. They say its discrimination to not let those who chose to pray outside of regulated work breaks... how is it not discrimination to not let me wander in at anytime of day I want because "thats what my beliefs tell me to do?" I think its great if you want to pray and show your committment, but I dont understand how its okay for a group of people in certain cultures to be able to do it, and not for others. Whats fair for 1 should be fair for all, right? But, remember, Church & State are seperate... No God Allowed in Public Schools.... thats how I was brought up... but now its okay for God, or Allah or Whoever to be in my workplace? What? I am so confused.
Apparently, as well, these 9 Somalian workers were instructed to sign a "Pork Acknowledgment Form" before they were hired. Now, that form is no longer in existence. In fact, they have come to a settlement that they dont have to handle pork. They have applied for a job in a CHICKEN PROCESSING PLANT.... did they not think that pork might be touched at some point in their careers? Lets say you work in an Hardware Store.. but you are allergic to Pine Timber... do you really think that your employer should allow you to not 'touch the products' then? Or, what if the thought of a 10 inch purple vibrator scares the hell out of you... would you apply at an Adult Store for a job, or would you wander to the local Wal-Mart and maybe apply there instead?
Maybe its just me, but I think common sense sometimes SHOULD prevail. But then again, apparently I am wrong, because all of this was decided by a FEDERALLY MEDIATED SETTLEMENT. Which, to me, tells me that my government thinks I am wrong.
And all this time I believed that if I was collecting a paycheck from an employer and working for them, I would have to abide by the conditions (within reason) of that environment. Funny that.
But lets not even get started on how the fellow employees are going to react to the Muslims being given extra breaks for prayer.. but if an employee comes back 10 minutes late from lunch, thats grounds for a write-up in the Employee Handbook(after a specified number of warnings). Who knows, maybe one day, the World might find GOD... even if it is to get an extra smoke break.