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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 16 January 2019

Sheikh Mohammed issues resolution on UAE's Child Right's Law

Employment of minors and restrictions on where children can be taken by adults are regulated under the law

The UAE Cabinet, chaired by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, pictured in October. Wam
The UAE Cabinet, chaired by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, pictured in October. Wam

Further details of a law to protect children in the UAE have been issued by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid and published in the Official Gazette.

On Wednesday, the Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai issued a cabinet resolution that includes 23 clauses regulating the training and employment of minors, procedures for reporting offences against children, conditions for becoming a child welfare officer and obligations that must be met by families fostering children.

The law, known locally as Wadeema's Law, stipulates that children under the age of 15 cannot be granted employment. Those over the age of 15 can apply to work with the written consent of their parents or legal guardian.

These employment applications will be reviewed by the Ministry of Community Development, in co-ordination with the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation. Minors that meet the minimum age requirements must also be deemed "medically fit to work" as per conditions determined by the two ministries.

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Under the new resolutions, parents or guardians are prohibited from taking children to places that qualify as "adult entertainment areas", places where smoking is allowed and any other areas that may be deemed dangerous for their health or well being.

Children are also banned from entering factories where potentially toxic gases are released, or any heavy machinery could pose a danger to them. This includes factories were dangerous metal cutting, pressing and moulding takes place, reported state news agency Wam.

Any visits to factories or businesses for a school trip must be pre-approved.

Wadeema's Law became known as the Child Right's Law in 2013 and came into effect in June 2016. The law is named in memory of Wadeema, an eight-year-old Emirati girl who was tortured to death by her father and another suspect in 2012. The law protects Emiratis and residents and lays out the legal rights of minors in the UAE. It is designed to protect children until age 18 from all types of abuse, including physical, verbal and psychological abuse.

Updated: December 26, 2018 09:26 PM

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