The UAE launches a new version of the “workers’ housing system”

Abdallah Shahin - | UAE

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation introduced the updated electronic "Labor Accommodation System," the first national platform for registering labor accommodation. It is available to companies in the country to promote awareness about suitable housing that meets the Ministry's standards and those of its government partners overseeing labor accommodation, with the goal of improving quality of life. Enhancing worker welfare and solidifying the country's status as a top global destination for living, working, and investing.

The Ministry issued a press statement yesterday urging companies with 50 or more employees to offer labor housing using approved systems. They must register the necessary data by accessing the labor housing system on the Ministry's website, following Ministerial Resolution No. 44 of 2022.

The Ministry stated that the electronic "labor housing system" helps improve companies' adherence to labor housing standards through regular inspections and enforcement actions against non-compliant companies. The Ministry's engagement with the business sector and awareness programs for institution owners have successfully improved commitment levels.

The Ministry reported a more than 1,000% increase in the number of private sector companies complying with labor housing standards and conditions and being registered in the labor housing system by the end of 2023, compared to their numbers at the start of the implementation of Ministerial Resolution No. 44 of 2022 in February 2022.

The Ministry attributed the increase in companies' adherence to labor housing standards to employers' recognition of the significance of complying with relevant laws and regulations. This compliance is seen as a way to enhance workers' living conditions, leading to improved productivity.

She emphasized the need for collaborative government actions to increase the number of compliant companies. She mentioned conducting 103 inspection campaigns in 2023, in partnership with four federal and local government agencies, to ensure that companies and housing owners follow the Ministry's approved regulations and standards. These standards are aligned with the highest health and humanitarian criteria to improve the quality of housing environments. Ensuring workers' well-being by providing essential services that match their needs, so promoting their health and productivity while addressing the dangers they encounter in their everyday tasks.

She highlighted the presence of national databases for labor housing, established through collaboration between the Ministry and pertinent federal and local government agencies. This partnership aims to implement electronic connectivity projects to streamline efforts in overseeing the work environment and labor housing, ultimately improving the quality of life and welfare of workers while bolstering the country's global competitiveness.

The Ministry implements a comprehensive system of labor housing standards to improve the competitiveness and appeal of the country's labor market. This system includes health requirements and ensures safety and comfort for workers, aiming to establish the country as a global leader in health, safety, and labor housing.

The legislation for workers' housing standards includes a comprehensive formula incorporating health, comfort, and cleanliness standards. It highlights specific details to ensure worker comfort and safety, such as suitable habitation conditions, company name signage in Arabic and English, and provisions for water, electricity, air conditioning, and lighting. Facilities must include specific areas for washing, cooking, and dining, and workers' housing structures should be constructed using non-combustible materials.

The requirements encompass adequate spaces for rest, beds, and storage of tools and clothing for each worker, along with proper ventilation, sanitation facilities, bathrooms, hygiene supplies, and other specifics that demonstrate the Ministry's commitment to ensuring the workers' well-being and offering a conducive living and housing environment that aligns with the country's global standing as one of the best places to reside in the world.

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