US firm fires 26 Muslim drivers over offering prayers


More than two dozen Somali Muslim drivers working for a motor company, Hertz, at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport were fired on Sunday, after refusing to clock out for daily breaks during which they normally pray. The 26 workers drive the company’s rental cars to and from the airport for cleaning and refueling. They were among the 34 Hertz employees suspended on September 30 for failing to clock out before breaks. 8 of the 34 signed the clock-out agreement and have returned to their jobs, company spokesman Rich Broome said. Termination letters have been sent to the rest. The firm made it clear that the suspended workers needed to agree to the clock-out conditions by the end of the day if they wanted to be reinstated, Broome said. “It’s not about prayer, it’s not about religion, it’s about reasonable requirements,” he added.