Abu Dhabi: The UAE Cabinet Sunday approved a new draft law to protect the rights of domestic workers and their employers, said His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
"We have approved a new draft law for the dom-estic workers in UAE. The new law shall protect the rights of both workers and employers," read a Twitter post by Shaikh Mohammad.
"Our Islamic values always encourage us to preserve the rights of the workers and to treat them well, and the law is emphasising this." Under the law, sections will be set up in the residency departments across the country to look into and sort out disputes that arise between domestic workers and their employers, Major General Nasser Al Awadi Al Menhali, Under-Secretary in the Ministry of Interior, Assistant Undersecretary for Naturalisation, Residency and Ports, told Gulf News.
"The law is meant to protect rights and obligations of both sides so as to guarantee their interests and rights," Major General Al Menhali said, but gave no further details.
The bill was drafted by a team of representatives from the ministries of interior, labour and justice.
It needs to be passed by the Federal National Council and signed into law by President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
The law aligns the UAE's rules with the International Labour Organisation's Convention 189 and Recommendation 201 on Decent Work for Domestic Workers, which was ratified by the UAE last year. The convention provides for clearly defined conditions of employment before work begins, including payment of recruitment agency fees by employers and not deducted from staff's wages, salary payment in cash at least once a month and at least one weekly day off.
The convention also provides that domestic help receives a written contract of employment before starting work.
The Vice-President chaired the Cabinet meeting at the Presidential Palace in Abu Dhabi in the presence of Lieutenant General Shaikh Saif Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, and Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs.