After participating in the nationwide "Day Without Immigrants" protest on Thursday, six employees at the Bahama Breeze restaurant in King of Prussia returned to work Friday only to learn they were dismissed, an immigration activist said. The restaurant disputed that account.
Carmen Guerrero, 49, a community organizer with Coalición Fortaleza Latina in Norristown, said immigrants working in and around the Montgomery County mall had planned on joining the daylong strike, and when the Bahama Breeze employees learned of it, they left their jobs.
When they showed up Friday, they were told they could not enter the building, she said.
She said the six had not advised their supervisor that they planned to participate in the strike.
"No one was ever fired," said Rich Jeffers, a spokesman for the restaurant.
Guerrero said she was contacted by the six employees about 9 a.m. Friday and told of the firings.
After a posting on the coalition Facebook page, over 100 callers bombarded the tropical-theme restaurant demanding it rehire the employees, she said.
By noon Friday, Guerrero said she was informed by the employees that they were all rehired, "to make it look like nothing happened."
The coalition, with whom Guerrero has worked since 2003, was one of the organizers of the "Day Without Immigrants" strike.