(MENAFN - Arab News) The labor ministry has launched a first-of-its-kind multilingual communication center to address complaints and grievances voiced by the kingdom's 1.2 million domestic workers.
the center will address enquires and complaints in eight languages. the center will also address allegations against sponsors.
the ministry has approved several penalties against violating employers within its new domestic labor program 'musanid" which includes banning employers from sponsoring domestic workers.
violations incur various penalties depending on the nature of the violations and the number of times they are repeated.
first-time violators will be fined a minimum of sr2000 or be banned from recruiting workers while second-time violators will be liable to pay anywhere between sr2000 and sr5000 or be banned from recruiting laborers for a period of three years or both.
a specialized committee can slap a lifetime ban on employers for third-time offenders. financial penalties will be deposited in a special bank account that will be used to shelter domestic workers for deportation expenditures in accordance with a mechanism approved by the minister of labor said one source.
the ministry of labor is authorized to present a prosecution list based on complaints to the committee he said.
the ministry will assign a chairman and two members on of whom will be a legal adviser at the ministry at each of its local offices to look into financial disputes between domestic workers and employers.
the committee will attempt to resolve conflicts amicably within between five and 10 working days.
plaintiffs can file their complaints to the labor court within 10 days for further action.
complainants can also file their complaints to the labor court within 10 days for further action.
the labor ministry has appealed to saudi families to report domestic workers who have run away to the nearest police station and ensure that domestic workers undertake tasks stated in their contract.
officials have also emphasized that workers should be treated with respect and be paid on time whether in cash or through check or deposit.
the committee aims to organize the labor market and reduce emerging problems such as working hours holidays and workload which affect labor pacts internationally.
saudis spend around sr28 billion on domestic labor and an additional sr7 billion toward salary increases annually.
in addition around 10 percent of deportees use up around sr300 million annually during their three-month trial period.