Initiative launched to ensure better working conditions for Saudi women

Saudis visit an interior design fair in the Red Sea city of Jeddah on November 8, 2017. (AFP)
Updated 21 January 2019

Initiative launched to ensure better working conditions for Saudi women

  • The ministry excludes the employment of women in industrial occupations and jobs that would expose them to dangers
  • Labor ministry issues decree to guarantee equal pay for equal work, prevent discrimination

RIYADH: The Ministry of Labor and Social Development on Sunday launched a unified organization for women’s work environment initiative. It aims to create an attractive working environment for women in various labor market activities, while also helping the private sector to attract female workers.
The initiative addresses a number of issues including avoiding any action that puts pressure on women’s freedom in a way that does not conform to the labor laws. There shall be no gender discrimination in wages for work of equal value. Furthermore, creating an appropriate working environment for women is a direct responsibility of the employer, by creating a suitable space for women to carry out their responsibilities, making sure to provide privacy and independence in women’s sections in the office.
In the event that women and men are employed in the same place of work, the number of females working in the same shift shall not be less than two. Women should not be employed in cleaning facilities or room service and made to carry luggage in the tourist accommodation sector, except for private accommodation that is for females only.
The ministry also requires companies and enterprises to provide enough security guards or an electronic security system that is operated by women. In addition, women should not work in facilities reserved for men only.
The ministry excludes the employment of women in industrial occupations and jobs that would expose them to dangers.
The ministry also specified working hours for females at night for various activities, which is until 11 p.m., except for industrial activities where they work until 6 p.m.
However, there are some other activities and situations in which women may operate at night, such as if the work is related to health or charity, emergency situations or if working at night is necessary to keep materials from rapid damage.
Women can also work at night if they hold senior positions, or if they are working in establishments that fall under the supervision of the cities or governorates and their municipalities in the month of Ramadan and peak seasons and in the central areas of Hajj and Umrah, such as working in women’s supplies shops or providing entertainment and nutrition services.
According to the ministerial decree, the penalties imposed by the labor law and the relevant ministerial decisions shall be applied on the establishment that violates any of the provisions of this decree, and shall be effective from the date of its issuance.

King Faisal Prize: Rewarding services to all of humanity

Updated 26 March 2019

King Faisal Prize: Rewarding services to all of humanity

RIYADH: Prince Turki Al-Faisal’s father, the late King Faisal, was a beacon of aspiration and hope. 

During his reign, the first girls’ schools were introduced, and he focused on educating the Saudi population as a whole to promote peace. 

The King Faisal Foundation was founded by King Faisal’s sons and daughters to commemorate his memory and vision. 

The significance of the annual King Faisal Prize (KFP) dates back to when a reporter asked him how he saw Saudi Arabia in 50 years’ time. 

The king responded: “I see Saudi Arabia in 50 years’ time as a wellspring of radiance for humanity.” 

The root of the foundation and the prize stems from his vision for all of humanity: Peace through education.

“The prize was established by the King Faisal Foundation soon after the foundation was formed,” Prince Turki told Arab News.

“It carries the message that the welfare of humanity is the primary importance of service to humanity,” he said. 

“The versatility of Islam is celebrating knowledge for all nationalities. As the first verse in the Holy Qur’an was ‘Read,’” Dr. Abdul Aziz Al-Subayyil, secretary-general of KFP, told Arab News. 

“This a universal dialogue between all nationalities and scientific fields, which seeks peace through knowledge.” he said.  

The significance of the Prize shows that: “This is the real Islam and this prize in the country of the Two Holy mosques represents that we are trying to observe the teaching of Islam and its implementation through the prize, which is the encouragement of science and introducing knowledge to people,” Al-Subayyil said.