Companies flouting work ban rules in Kuwait asked to comply

August 8, 2011

A ban on afternoon outdoor work in Kuwait is being reportedly flouted by several companies.

“Firms have allegedly prevented the inspection teams from the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour to check construction sites to ensure strict compliance with the ban on labourers working under the direct heat of the sun from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm during summer,” sources told Kuwaiti daily Al Qabas.

According to the sources that The Daily did not identify, the companies feel they are above the law and refuse to allow the inspection teams to enter the construction sites.

However, the companies had to eventually agree to allow the inspectors after formal complaints were filed and the ministry was prompted into taking action.

“The ministry has reiterated calls for the companies to abide by the regulations to protect the human rights of their workers as guaranteed by the constitution,” The sources said.

“The ministry remains committed to its promise to enforce the rule and it will not allow anyone to use his influence to bend it.”

Kuwait and other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries have recently started implementing the rule to spare labourers the scorching summer heat. Initially resisted by the powerful business communities, the ban has however been gradually accepted even though some companies attempt to circumvent it.

Several local human rights watchdogs have also been exerting pressure to improve the working and living conditions of the high number of unskilled labourers, mostly from Asia, working in the region.



About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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