Emirati government employees are shown at work in a government office. Image Credit: Gulf News Archive

Dubai: The government of Dubai, under the directives of Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council, announced that some government employees, pregnant women, people with determination and the elderly, will now be able to work from home via a remote work system.

The Dubai Executive Council issued a circular on Thursday that includes a series of precautionary measures to ensure the health and safety of its employees and protect them from the novel coronavirus COVID-19.

Abdullah Mohammed Al Basti, Secretary General of the Dubai Executive Council, said that the precautionary measures aim to protect the health and safety of employees in various government departments, which include thousands of people.

Al Basti said that the directives issued by Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed emphasized the need to take all necessary measures to protect employees and ensure the wellbeing of their families.

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The implementation of the new system enables pregnant women, the elderly and people of determination to work remotely. Flexible work hours will also be in place for employees, while mothers with children in ninth grade or younger can also take advantage of the new work system. Women with children who are availing themselves of e-learning can also work remotely.

According to the new safety measures, employees are encouraged to carry out virtual meetings through digital platforms and avoid business trips unless absolutely necessary. An awareness campaign has also been spread for employees and clients through internal communications, which provide methods of disinfection and sanitization for employees and customers.

Part of the precautionary measures further includes the sterilization of offices, facilities and areas with customers and clients.

The Dubai Government urged clients to use smart applications when carrying out transactions, and pointed out that events and large gatherings have been postponed to ensure the safety of field personnel and customer service staff.

Abdullah Ali Bin Zayed Al Falasi, Director General of the Dubai Government Human Resources Department (DGHR), stressed that these precautionary measures will be applied immediately, as of March 12, across all entities affiliated with the Dubai government.

According to the circular, government offices will stop using the fingerprint device to record attendance and instead, replace it with the "smart employee" application or any alternative systems until further notice.