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UAE records 30 firms violating midday break law

Inspectors reported 30 violations of the rule out of 27,000 visits conducted between mid-June and the end of July 2015, the UAE's Ministry of Labour announced

30 violators of the midday work ban were found in the UAE [Representational Image].
30 violators of the midday work ban were found in the UAE [Representational Image].

On Sunday, 9 August, the UAE's Ministry of Labour (MoL) announced that its inspectional visits have uncovered 30 companies violating the midday break law during 2015.

Out of the 27,000 visits conducted between mid-June and the end of July 2015, inspectors reported up to 30 violations of the rule, which bans labourers from working on site between 12:30pm and 3pm. 

Maher Al Obed, assistant under-secretary for inspectional affairs at the MoL said: "The decision aims to protect workers’ health and safety during extreme conditions such as working in high temperatures in the summer season."

Obed added that the violators will be charged $1,361 (AED5,000) for each labourer found working during banned hours, not exceeding $13,613 (AED50,000). 

Violating firms also risk a temporary shut-down and a reduction in their classification, state agency WAM reported.

The midday work ban urges business owners to provide shaded areas for workers during the break period, to adopt an eight-hour work day, and to reimburse labourers for overtime, according to the provisions of Federal Law No. 8 of 1980.

"There are some exceptional cases that require continuation of work during those periods for technical reasons, but employers are obliged to provide cold drinking water, safety tools and materials, including salt, lemon, and fresh salads, which are all required necessities as approved by health authorities in the country," concluded Obed.

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