Khadar Ducaale spent the first few days of the new year helping his neighbors file unemployment claims.
Ducaale is a longtime community activist in Fort Morgan who runs the local Somali Community Office, which is designed to help immigrants transition to life in the town. This year, he's spending a lot of time helping the nearly 200 Muslim employees who were fired from the Fort Morgan Cargill plant Dec. 23 after they claimed its management was no longer allowing them to pray in the workplace. The Council of American-Islamic Relations is negotiating with Cargill representatives to resolve the conflict, but in the meantime, some are looking for work elsewhere.
"It's kind of between a rock and a hard place," Ducaale said. "People want to go back [to work], but they still want to pray."