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Fort Morgan workers accuse Cargill of federal employment discrimination

Lawyers for about 130 Cargill workers involved in a workplace prayer dispute at a Fort Morgan meatpacking plant have filed an EEOC complaint accusing the agribusiness giant of religious discrimination.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations and Rathod Mohamedbhai LLC, a Denver law firm that specializes in civil rights and employment law, filed the complaints with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, alleging violations of federal employment discrimination law, CAIR confirmed Monday.

Specifically, the complaints allege that the Cargill Meat Solutions plant in Fort Morgan violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which says employers must “reasonably accommodate” religious observance as long as it does not result in undue hardship for the business.

“Cargill informed their employees that they wouldn’t accommodate Muslim employees anymore,” Denver attorney Qusair Mohamedbhai said. “This is a dramatic change in how they did business.”

Cargill on Dec. 23 fired about 150 second-shift employees for violating the company’s attendance policy after they failed to call in or show up for work for three consecutive days.

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