Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large

Firms 'depriving workers of food'

More than 100 companies are facing action for depriving workers of food and housing up to 10 men in a room.

SHARJAH // More than 100 companies are facing action for breaking labour laws, the municipality said yesterday, including for housing up to 10 men in a room and depriving their workers of food. The municipality said it found 124 companies housing workers in overcrowded and dilapidated rooms. Mohammed al Kaabi, the head of the security and operations section, said the firms "had to be dealt with as the law requires".

"It is the responsibility of the Ministry of Labour to take action against these companies," he said. "We have given them a full list of violating companies from our recent inspections." In typical cases 10 workers were living in rooms meant for four people, forcing some to sleep on floors, he said. Earlier this week a municipality inspection team found up to 80 workers sharing one house in which the bathroom and kitchen were being used as makeshift bedrooms.

Federal government inspectors also reported finding unpaid and underpaid workers, overcrowded housing and other violations of labour laws at more than 1,800 worksites and labour camps across the country. Abdelrazaq Qambar, the Ministry of Labour's chief inspector, said some firms, to cut costs, had added as much as 40 per cent to the population of their camps and cut meals to workers from three a day to one.

A senior ministry official said that it had received a list of violating companies from Sharjah Municipality and pledged to take action. Mr al Kaabi said some companies were intentionally seeking cheaper and dilapidated houses for their workers to maximise profits, even though Sharjah had an adequate supply of accommodation. "We send a warning letter first, then cut off electricity and water and subsequently close the buildings in case of continued violations of the standards," he said.

"We want all companies to know that providing adequate and healthy accommodation for their workers is not only benefiting authorities but them also. A healthy worker is more productive than an unhealthy one." ykakande@thenational.ae

Back to the top

More articles

Editor's Picks

 Sarah Geronimo. Courtesy: FLASH Entertainment

Sarah Geronimo brings her star power to Abu Dhabi this weekend

Ahead of her Abu Dhabi concert on Thursday night, we take a look at the Filipina singer Sarah Geronimo’s extraordinary career.

 Fatema holds a picture of her son Nurul Karim as she poses for a photograph in front of her slum house in Savar. Fatema lost her son Nurul Karim and her daughter Arifa, who were working on the fifth floor of Rana Plaza when it collapsed on April 24, 2013. All photos Andrew Biraj / Reuters

These women know the real price of cheap high street fashion

Survivors of the world's worst garment factory accident, struggle to rebuild their lives from the rubble of the Rana Plaza collapse as Bangladesh prepares to mark the first anniversary of the disaster.

 Visitors look at the medieval inventor Al Jazari’s water-powered Elephant Clock. The clock is on show at the 1001 Inventions exhibition at Sharjah Expo Centre. Photos Antonie Robertson / The National

1001 Inventions: in praise of Islam’s gifts to the world

Down the centuries, from camera obscura to designing a sail that allowed early seafarers to tack into the wind, Muslim scientists have made many significant contributions to science. Rym Ghazal and Asmaa Al Hameli visit an exhibition in Sharjah that celebrates those contributions

 Mumbai Indians fans cheer they team on the opening match between Mumbai Indians and Kolkata Knight Riders in IPL 2014 at Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi. Ravindranath K / The National

Earn cash back with the IPL cricket in the UAE

Dunia finance promotion allows cricket lovers to earn up to 6 per cent unlimited cash back on any spending they make on a day when an IPL match is played in the UAE.

 Iranian workers at the Iran Khodro auto plant in Tehran on March 18. Maryam Rahmanian for The National

Iran’s love of cars survives devastating sanctions

Sanctions and energy subsidy reductions might have hurt the Iranian automotive industry. But car makers at one factory are still optimistic, Yeganeh Salehi reports from Tehran

 This comparison image shown on Reddit annotated the objects with vehicles from the movies.

Disney confirms that Star Wars: Episode 7 is filming in Abu Dhabi desert

Disney yesterday confirmed that the filming of Star Wars: Episode 7 is taking place in the desert in Abu Dhabi.


To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National