varigb707
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Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Fri Oct 21, 2011 10:45 pm

http://money.msn.com/business-news/a...?feed=AP&date=20111021&id=14417994

According to the rental car company, said drivers were not clocking out for their prayer breaks. Eventhough their union contract did not require them to do it...
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comorin
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Fri Oct 21, 2011 11:22 pm

Did work interfere with religion or did religion interfere with work?
 
ltbewr
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 12:32 am

While their union contracts may not require it, it may be a state law/regulation or that of the City of Seattle or the Administrative authority over SEA. to protect workers. Also if clock out/in for break, it may mean they don't have to pay you for that 15 minutes a break is taken.

About 80% of the drivers staff for Hertz at SEA are of the Islamic faith and other non-Islamic employees have also been fired or suspended for the same reason.

There are Federal and State laws that require reasonable accommodations for religious beliefs. I suspect there will be some kind of hearing before Federal or State Labor regulation authorities as to these firings as well as support from the Union involved to fight these firings.
 
Stealthz
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 12:41 am

Even financial journos rarely let the real story get between them and a good headline...

Does this put a slightly different slant on things?

Quote:
"The failure of many employees to return to work promptly after prayers had created an unmanageable, unfair work environment at the Seattle airport location,"

Do Catholics rostered on Sunday get paid breaks to attend Mass or Jews given time to go to Temple?

Didn't think so?
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Dreadnought
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 12:57 am

Quoting comorin (Reply 1):
Did work interfere with religion or did religion interfere with work?

If you bother reading the article, it appears that people were taking their own sweet time on their breaks, hence the policy of clocking out (we are not told if employees were only expected to have 7:30 hours at the end of the day rather than the standard 8:00 hours, but that was probably the case.

I remember when I was young and had to punch time cards. One good way of getting your ass fired was to stretch out your breaks.
You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life. - W. Churchill
 
comorin
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 1:23 am

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 4):
Quoting comorin (Reply 1):
Did work interfere with religion or did religion interfere with work?

If you bother reading the article,

I did. Did you even understand my comment?
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 1:50 am

Quoting comorin (Reply 5):

I did. Did you even understand my comment?

Yes, and I found it irrelevant. Religion had nothing to do with it. Taking long breaks was the issue.
You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life. - W. Churchill
 
canoecarrier
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 1:54 am

Quoting ltbewr (Reply 2):
There are Federal and State laws that require reasonable accommodations for religious beliefs.

This has been in the local news here for some time. Here's a local source:
http://www.king5.com/news/Hertz-fire...s-in-break-dispute--132295373.html

The company isn't saying they can't pray, or that they can't take a break to pray, they're only saying that people weren't coming back to work promptly from their break. FYI, this requirement to clock in and out is imposed on all the Hertz drivers, not just those that are Muslim. And the breaks are paid, clocking in and out is only to track the 10 minutes.

So, they suspended those that wouldn't sign on to the new policy that they could continue to take their breaks but they had to clock in and out so Hertz could make sure they were coming back on time.

There's even an area in the bottom of the parking garage at SEA next to the employee bus stop that they've all prayed at for years. I'd love to hear your rational on how the company wasn't providing reasonable accommodation given they have a dedicated space to pray and they're paid for it.

Quoting comorin (Reply 1):
Did work interfere with religion or did religion interfere with work?

I think the later.
The beatings will continue until morale improves
 
FoxTwo
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 4:05 am

F2
 
wn700driver
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 8:35 am

It's pretty obvious that the company made a good decision WRT actual policy. They cannot be expected to make special exceptions for this, especially, if the "privilage" here is being abused, as seems to be the case.

However, reading the article, it doesn't seem that that's the main issue. The union's POV suggest that the problem is that the company violated the contract by way if issuing no warnings, and simply terminating or suspending employees without notice.

From our perspective, Hertz didn't even follow their own internal policy," union spokesman Paul Zilly said Friday. Hertz didn't provide a verbal or written warning and jumped right to suspension

This would indeed put the company in violation. Looks like they're legally obligated to re-instate, and start from zero with this issue. They will probably have to also issue back pay for the time these individuals were out of work. Hopefully they'll look before they leap next time...
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Dreadnought
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 1:10 pm

Quoting wn700driver (Reply 9):
However, reading the article, it doesn't seem that that's the main issue. The union's POV suggest that the problem is that the company violated the contract by way if issuing no warnings, and simply terminating or suspending employees without notice.

From our perspective, Hertz didn't even follow their own internal policy," union spokesman Paul Zilly said Friday. Hertz didn't provide a verbal or written warning and jumped right to suspension

1) It appears that this is an old issue, as it was the subject of negotiations a year or two before.

2) They were asked to sign off on the new policy, and some refused. I consider that fair warning. They were not fired without warning.
You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life. - W. Churchill
 
StuckInCA
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 1:58 pm

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 10):
They were not fired without warning.

I'd agree with this. Those of us who live in the Seattle area have been reading about this for some time and saw it coming. I'd think they saw it coming too.
 
seb146
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 3:36 pm

Quoting ltbewr (Reply 2):
if clock out/in for break, it may mean they don't have to pay you for that 15 minutes a break is taken.

In the state of Washington (and California and Oregon) state law pays employees for breaks but not for lunch periods. So, when these people go pray on their break, they are actually on the clock. Ten or fifteen minutes depending on the company. If they were taking 15 when they were supposed to take 10 or taking 25 when they were supposed to take 15, that is a violation of company policy. If they do it over and over and over, that is grounds termination. In any company.
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wn700driver
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 8:35 pm

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 10):
1) It appears that this is an old issue, as it was the subject of negotiations a year or two before.

2) They were asked to sign off on the new policy, and some refused. I consider that fair warning. They were not fired without warning.

You may very well consider that a warning, but if it's in the contract that there needs to be a written warning(s), then the Law does not. If that is the case, yes Hertz would be in violation here, and would have to reinstate, as well as being open for litigation. All I know is what the article says there, so I cannot speak definitavely on that. But I do know from experience that if something's in a contract, it is legally binding and cannot be altered unless both parties agree (and it appears that at least one did not...), regardless of what form the company puts out after the fact.

As someone with an awful lot of HR experience, I cannot for the life of me understand why the company didn't follow that procedure if termination was their goal. As I said above, it would not have been hard. Unless there is a lot more to it, Hertz clearly got lazy here and it came home to bite them in the a$$. That's their own fault.
Base not your happiness on the deeds of others, for what is given can be taken away. No Hope = No Fear
 
canoecarrier
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 8:51 pm

Quoting seb146 (Reply 12):
In the state of Washington (and California and Oregon) state law pays employees for breaks but not for lunch periods. So, when these people go pray on their break, they are actually on the clock. Ten or fifteen minutes depending on the company.

To add to this Seb, it's not like the company didn't think they were, in general, good employees. Anyone familiar with SEA knows that a large percentage of the rental car companies are staffed by Somali or Ethiopian Muslims. That's a pretty high percentage to say that they weren't doing their job and the company decided not to hire someone from a particular ethnic/religious group. By the way, not everyone that was suspended decided not to sign the document. Nine of them are back employed with Hertz.

The employees took this as was an attack on their religion, which it wasn't. It was a business decision. If I was a business owner I would probably implement the same policy if I was paying people for being away from work past their break. I think they got some bad advice from their union.
The beatings will continue until morale improves
 
seb146
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RE: Hertz Rent-A-Car Fires Muslim Drivers...

Sat Oct 22, 2011 10:55 pm

Quoting canoecarrier (Reply 14):
The employees took this as was an attack on their religion, which it wasn't. It was a business decision. If I was a business owner I would probably implement the same policy if I was paying people for being away from work past their break. I think they got some bad advice from their union.

I have never belonged to a union, but I have been written up for not returning from break in the allowed time. That is: I took a 20 minute break instead of 15. It had nothing to do with religion. They don't care. In fact, they don't ask except during the hiring because some faiths require only worship on certain days. Other than that, they don't care. They just want people working and taking the breaks they are supposed to be taking. Not 25 minute paid breaks, not 9 minute paid breaks.
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