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Ariens Co. fires seven Muslim employees over unscheduled prayer breaks
by Rick Barrett
Ariens Co. says it has fired seven Muslim employees for taking unscheduled prayer breaks, and 14 others have resigned over the issue.
More than 50 Somali immigrant Muslims at the Brillion manufacturer recently protested the company's enforcement of a policy of two 10-minute breaks per work shift — without accommodations for unscheduled prayer time.
The Muslim employees wanted the manufacturer of snowblowers and lawn mowers to continue a previous, more lenient practice of allowing them to leave their work stations at different times — such as at dawn and sunset — to pray as their faith requires of them.
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