Listening to the Opinions of Citizens in Al Samha
ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates - Tuesday, January 13th 2015 [ME NewsWire]
During the council of the Ministry of Interior (MoI) entitled “Cultural Communication with Domestic Workers and its Impact on Reducing Crime” hosted by Mohamed Abdulla Al Rumaithi in Al Samha in Abu Dhabi, citizens agreed that the positive treatment of domestic workers allows them to be assimilated into the family.
It was concluded that treating the domestic workers well is a constructive method for positively impacting their behavior and for deterring them from committing any wrong doings. The participants also said that the Ministry’s councils are a progressive way to enable the expression of opinions and ideas regarding societal issues and ways to address them.
Citizens noted that these councils deepen communal awareness regarding all topics of discussion. They pointed out that through discussing the treatment of domestic workers, new avenues become available that progressively lead towards changing the behavior of some of the domestic workers for the better and additionally promote both the rights of the employers and employees.
The council was moderated by media personality, Juma’a Al Nuaimi from the Al Ittihad Newspaper. He pointed out that the issues of the domestic workers are of interest to the public, especially when promoting the concept of intercultural communication with this category.
For his part, Colonel Saeed Salem Al Shamesi, Director of the Information and Follow-up Department at the Directorate General of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Abu Dhabi, said: “Treating the domestic workers well will yield positive results. Hiring foreign domestic workers is not a new thing, and it is not exclusive to certain countries. Because of this, we should be able to learn from and leverage everyone’s expertise to reduce any negative effects that this situation may cause.”
Lieutenant Colonel Dr. Salah Obeid Al Ghoul, Director of the Law Respect Culture Bureau at the Ministry of Interior, reiterated the keenness of the police commands to expand the timeline of the awareness councils into a yearly basis. “The recommendations garnered through these councils are extremely important and enrich the discussions of the various topics - which in turn provide feedback for the decision makers and specialists,” he said.
He called upon the families to open the channels of communication with the domestic workers and to provide them with a healthy environment, and the necessities and stability of a decent life which make them feel as though they are being treated well.
Colonel Al Shamesi spoke about the guidelines of the new law for the domestic workers. He explained that the new law regulates the rights and duties of the employers and the employees, as well as the recruiting agencies. He stressed that it will manage many loopholes that have previously stinted efforts made in order to solve the existing problems while simultaneously providing privileges for the workers in accordance with their roles and improving the relationship between the employers and employees.
Colonel Al Shamesi urged members of society to change the term “servants” from their vocabulary to the term “domestic workers” - as the latter is more humanitarian.
Lt. Colonel Jamal Salim Al Ameri, Head of the Public Relations Section at the Abu Dhabi Police Traffic and Patrols Directorate, said: “Our righteous religion provides key references for us regarding the treatment of this segment of society.” He cited some verses from the Holy Qur’an and the sayings of the Prophet Mohamed (peace be upon him) that urge the proper treatment of workers and to give them their full rights. He also called upon the public to monitor the behavior and morals of the workers and to report any violations to the concerned authorities.
Speakers at the council pointed out that the recruitment agencies disregard the wishes of the citizens in acquiring skilled workers that are able to understand the traditions of the conservative Emirati families. The host, Mohamed Abdulla Al Rumaithi, thanked the Ministry of Interior, represented by the Law Respect Culture Bureau, for this initiative that encourages the public to express their opinions and recommendations which promotes solving the issue of the domestic workers as well as other key issues.
Atiq Al Rumaithi discussed the methods of some of the recruitment agencies in obtaining the workers and encouraging them to abscond. He pointed out that the guarantee period is for three months only, noting that this is insufficient time.
Mohamed Thani Al Rumaithi suggested linking the domestic workers to the wage of the sponsor so the number of the employees is in accordance with the needs of the family. Citizen Ahmed Kanoun provided several solutions to address the issues of the employees and their cooperation with the Ministry of Interior. During the discussion, another citizen pointed out the importance of ensuring that this segment is skilled and supported by the proper regulations.
The participants of the council recommended treating domestic workers in a humanitarian and a civilized manner based upon the morals of the Emirati society that are derived from the righteous teachings of the religion and in accordance with Arabic traditions. Participants additionally recommended to set a maximum salary for the workers and to intensify the search for workers who abscond.
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The Arabic-language text of this announcement is the official, authoritative version. Translations are provided as an accommodation only, and should be cross-referenced with the Arabic-language text, which is the only version of the text intended to have legal effect.
The UAE Minister of Interior's General Secretariat, Tactical Affairs and Security Media Department
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