Amazon has already gone to great lengths to give their Muslim workers special accommodations. In response to complaints, they have provided prayer mats, they have given their conference rooms over to Muslims who wanted to covert it into a Ramadan prayer center, and they have approved shift transfers for Muslim workers who can’t fast appropriately on their assigned schedules. You would think this would be seen as more than enough. You would be wrong.
According to a piece from Agency France-Presse, Muslim workers want more.
“The workers, many of whom are practicing Muslims, say the required productivity rate is too high, the company is unconcerned about worker injuries and that the conditions don’t allow practicing Muslims to pray as they otherwise would,” says the article.
This obviously isn’t the first we’ve heard about abysmal working conditions inside the online retail giant’s warehouses, but seriously? More time to pray? At what point does it become much (much) easier to, you know, simply stop hiring Muslims? Of course, there are discrimination laws and all that, but when there’s tension between religious discrimination and just outright NOT BEING ABLE TO DO THE JOB because you have to spend all your time in the conference room praying to Mecca, surely that is not Amazon’s problem. What if we start a religion that simply doesn’t believe in doing any work at all? Does Amazon then have to accommodate our right to have a job? It’s beyond ridiculous.
More from the story:
A group of Amazon workers in Minnesota who are Somali refugees resettled in the Midwestern US state demanded better working conditions Friday during a protest outside one of the retailer’s warehouses.
“We don’t have rights in the company,” worker Abdulkadir Ahmad, 30, told AFP.
“We do not have enough time to pray. There is a lot of pressure. They say your rate is too low,” Ahmad said.
The workers timed their protest during the busy holiday shopping season, hoping to force the online retailer to make changes.
Imagine being a Somali-American migrant complaining that you don’t have “rights” at Amazon! Imagine saying this while outside protesting. What happens in Somalia when you try this kind of thing? Need we even research it?
Maybe these refugees would be more comfortable back in their home countries. Then they can grab the levers of power, fight for some Middle Eastern freedom, and have the Islamic paradise of their dreams at work.
Or they can appreciate that they have been given an extraordinary opportunity to live safely in this country and try – you know, TRY – to assimilate. Is that really so much to ask?