Muslim Amazon Workers In Minnesota Want More Praying Time -- Is This A Right?

Some workers in Minnesota want Amazon to get more time to pray, should the company give in?

source: Daily Tech News Today

A group of Muslims employed by Amazon in Minneapolis, Minnesota have been protesting because they are upset that the company does not give them enough time to pray.

They say they fear being fired from the distribution center after taking breaks to pray.

The practicing Muslims want to have the liberty to pray five times a day, but that is not possible because of Amazon's strict hourly packing quota, especially during the holiday season.

Khadra Ibrahin told the media that she and her colleagues are pressured to “make rate,” according to Vox.

The Somali immigrant revealed the warehouse's current packing rate is 240 boxes an hour, but it sometimes increases to 400.

Ibrahin went on to say that the employees are penalized if they do not meet this rate which can lead to them getting fired.

The single mother of two went on to explain: "Every time I walk through those doors, I am filled this dread that tonight is going to be the night that I get fired. When you take a job at a warehouse, you have to be mentally and physically prepared for a certain kind of work, but I have never felt threatened by a workplace like this before."

She added: "I want to keep this job to provide for my family, and I am also working as hard as I can, but you can’t live under this type of pressure. The way Amazon pushes people is not moral."

Amazon has issued a statement saying that the workers are given one paid prayer break of about 20 minutes and if they choose they can take unpaid prayer breaks for a longer duration.

The statement said in part: "We work hard every day to ensure all of our employees are treated fairly and with dignity and respect, including here in Minnesota where we have an open and direct dialogue with employees. Amazon offers a great employment opportunity with excellent pay – ranging here from $16.25-$20.80 an hour, and comprehensive benefits including health care, up to 20 weeks parental leave, paid education, promotional opportunities, and more."

The company went on to reveal: "[We] encourage anyone to compare our pay, benefits, and workplace to other retailers and major employers in the Shakopee community and across the country. We invite anyone to see for themselves and take a tour through our fulfillment center tour program."

The protest has sparked a debate, should religious people who demand time to pray at work get it or not?