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Waiting and hoping: A month later, why most Somali workers haven't re-applied to Cargill
by Stephanie Alderton
More than a month after about 200 Somali employees were fired from the Fort Morgan Cargill plant, the original conflict has yet to be resolved.
The workers were terminated at the end of December after a dispute with the second shift management about prayer time at work. After the story reached national headlines, Cargill Meat Solutions changed its re-hiring policy to allow the unemployed workers to re-apply for their jobs after 30 days. Now about a quarter of them have returned to work, but others are getting ready to file a lawsuit against the company.
Said Ali, a Fort Morgan imam and former employee at Cargill, said he doesn't want to go back for a few reasons. One is that there are many disadvantages to being a new hire, and he wouldn't be guaranteed to get his old position back. The other is that he feels the problem he walked away from in the first place still exists.
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