Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 9 July 2020

CORONAVIRUS

Coronavirus: Sharjah Police rescue homeless workers living on the streets

In the past months, UAE authorities have helped many homeless sleeping rough after losing their jobs

Sharjah Police and charity workers rescued hundreds of unemployed construction workers who were found living on the streets.

Nearly 280 were put up in accommodation blocks used by police officers during their training.

The workers had lost their jobs and slept rough in an under-construction building for nearly three months.

The authorities were made aware of their plight when a call was made to Sharjah Radio’s Direct Line show (Al Khat Al Mubasher).

Last Thursday, officers came to the aid of the group. They are now being taken care of at the Sharjah Police Academy’s complex.

“After a man called the show about the workers’ situation, we immediately started working on it and prepared the accommodation to which the men have moved into on Saturday,” said Maj Gen Saif Al Shamsi, commander-in-chief of Sharjah Police.

“They were very happy to be provided with a place to live, because they had nothing.”

We are in contact with their consulate which is helping them return home on repatriation flights one group at a time

Maj Gen Saif Al Shamsi

The Indian consulate and Sharjah Charity is providing the men with much-needed food, clothing and face masks.

Some of the workers in the group had come to the UAE on visit visas to look for jobs whereas others were residents who had been laid off.

“We are in contact with their consulate which is helping them return home on repatriation flights one group at a time,” said Gen Al Shamsi.

UAE officials have housed groups of several low-income rough sleepers after they lost their jobs because of the coronavirus outbreak.

On June 8, charity workers and Dubai Police helped a group of more than 20 homeless men found sleeping in a park in Deira.

The men worked in construction and others as part-time labourers in Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman and Abu Dhabi.

Accommodation was arranged for 12 men from Nigeria, five from Uganda, three from Pakistan, two from India and one each from Iran and Kenya.

The Dubai Police and Dar Al Ber had earlier helped repatriate a group of men from Ghana who were unemployed and homeless.

Police said they endeavoured to assist all, including the 25 Ghanaian visitors unable to return home because of the closure of airports in their country.

“The Dubai Police provided these individuals with shelter at the Hind Humanitarian City, food, clothes, and all other necessary requirements and services to ensure their well-being until they are able to return home,” a police spokeswoman said.

Updated: June 29, 2020 04:39 PM

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