New labour law another feather in UAE’s cap - GulfToday

New labour law another feather in UAE’s cap

UAE Labour Laws

Stringent regulations have been in place in the UAE to safeguard rights of the labourers in the country.

The new Federal decree on labour relations in the private sector is very praiseworthy, a well-accomplished feat that was long awaited.  It sets at rest any doubt about gender parity where wages are concerned, nips the thought of exploitation of workers, creates a salubrious working environment and business climate and comes as a relief for men who have turned fathers by granting them paternity leave, among other things.

The new law takes effect on February 2, 2022.

The new decree-law seeks to enhance the elasticity, resilience and sustainability of the labour market nationwide, and sees that workers’ rights are not breached. It places worker welfare and wellbeing at its core.

The new law has been crafted taking all issues into account, in consultation with all parties, a fitting feather in its cap as it surges towards the next 50 years of growth and prosperity.

It also strengthens the presence and competitiveness of Emiratis in the labour market.

It guarantees the rights of both the employer and the employee in a fair manner.

What’s more important, it emphasises international labour obligations agreed upon by the UAE.

Some key niggling issues have been taken care of.

• In Article 74, the decree-law stipulates that the employer may not use any means that would force the worker or threaten him/her with any penalty or force him/her to work for the employer or force him/her to provide a service against his/her will.

• The law forbids sexual harassment, bullying or any form of verbal, physical or psychological violence against a worker by the employer, his/her superiors at work or colleagues.

• It prohibits all forms of discriminations based on race, colour, sex, religion, national or social origin or disability that would scale down the possibilities of equal opportunity.

It ensures maintaining rights of women, granting them the same wage as men if they are doing the same work.

A key feature of the law is that it allows employers to hire those whose work contracts have expired, but who are still in the country, through easy and flexible procedures.

The law grants companies the flexibility to pay wages in the UAE dirhams or in any other currency, according to the agreement between the two parties in the work contract.

The decree-law specifies a fixed-term contract as one that doesn’t exceed three years, and it is permissible, upon agreement by the two parties, to extend or renew this contract for a similar or lesser duration once or more.

All private sector workers are entitled to a paid, weekly rest day, with the possibility of increasing the weekly rest day at the discretion of the employer.

The law also assigns the employer the responsibility to pay for the fees and costs of recruitment and not to collect the same from the worker either directly or indirectly.

There are some other interesting highlights. The law stipulates the prohibition of withholding of official documents, such as passports, belonging to the workers and forcing him or her to leave the country at the end of an employment contract.

The amendments include a provision, according to which, a worker is entitled to an end-of-service gratuity, in accordance with the legislation regulating pensions and social security in the country.

As per the law, a foreign worker who has worked full-time and who has completed one year or more of continuous service with an establishment, shall be paid end-of-service benefits calculated according to the basic wage, with a wage of 21 days for each of the first five years of service and 30 days for each subsequent year.

It regulates the obligations of the employer, the most prominent of which is the establishment of labour regulations, the obligation to provide adequate accommodation, protection and prevention, and train workers and help them develop their skills.

Related articles

Other Articles