Ministry records 7,127 women job violations
The Ministry of Labor has recorded a total of 7,127 violations of its binding guidelines for women employment in retail shops selling lingerie and other items of women clothing.
A source said the ministry aims at increasing employment opportunities for Saudi women in the retail sector.
“The ministry ran a national inspection campaign throughout the Kingdom to ensure that store owners and shopping center owners adhere to the rules and regulations. The ministry’s regulations are set to ensure the safety and comfort of Saudi woman employees,” said the source.
The ministry has also set up penalties for various violations. “According to the updated Labor Law, store owners face a SR10,000 fine for every male employee working in a position earmarked for only females. The store may also be shut down for a day,” said the source.
The source also said the stores will be fined with the same amount if they do not provide a separate section for female employees in a mixed store.
“The ministry will also issue a fine of SR5,000 for owners assigning women employees late night shifts,” said the source. The source added the ministry depends on the general public and its initiative in reporting any violation.
“It is the duty of every citizen to be educated about his own country and its laws. The effort of regulating an entire society lies on the authorities and the citizens. Customers can call 19911 to report any violation,” said the source.
The source also said customers can also email firstname.lastname@example.org to report any violations relating to the employment of Saudi women in the retail sector.
A report last month said nearly half of the lingerie shops in the Kingdom have shut down after implementation of the rule allowing only women to be employed at apparel and undergarment stores three years ago.
While women in Saudi Arabia have come to appreciate the rule, it has hit businesses hard, with investors claiming that over 40 percent of lingerie shops in the Kingdom have closed down.
Difficulty in employing enough women to work at lingerie shops was one of the main reasons for the businesses to shut shop, according to the report.
High attrition rate among women was another factor for the setback to lingerie shop owners, who complained that most women left their jobs without notice while many remained absent for several days.