Midday Break Rule

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Mandatory Midday Break for laborers will start from June 15, said the Ministry of Labour.

Companies will have to give two and a half hour break from 12:30 pm to 3:00 pm to those workers who work in open areas like construction sites, as per their decision issued on Wednesday.

The three month midday break rule will be enforced from June 15until Sept 15this year.

The ministerial decision also stated that the working hours must not exceed 8 hours in the morning/evening shift and they must be paid overtime, if working for additional hours.

The Ministry of Labour, Saqr Ghobash issued the decision which said thatlaborersmust not work outside during the banned hours and those companies working on emergency projects must apply to the ministry to be exempt from the midday ban, and it will be determined on a case-by-case basis.

The exemption applies to those employees who must continue their work for technical reasons, though the order says, “employers are demanded to provide all facilities that cater to the health of workers including first aid, air-conditioners, sunshades and cold water.” Such laborers must be also be provided with enough cold water, lemon, salt and healthy salads during working hours.

Workers can continue in banned hours if they are working on projects that cannot be postponed for technical reasons such as repairing damages in water pipes, petrol and sewage pipes or on the disconnection of electrical lines. This also includes those working on projects licensed from governmental departments which could affect the movement of traffic if the work should stop for few hours, or which could affect electrical, water supplies or etisalat.

Employers are instructed to provide shaded areas for workers to rest during the midday break and they must also provide adequate preventive methods to protect workers from work-related injuries.

Employers must post notice of daily work timings, “at a noticeable place at the work site so the ministry inspectors can see it clearly during their inspection visits”.

Penalties for violation

Companies found violating the midday summer break will face penalties.

First time offenders will have their firms downgraded to Category C for at least three months, and will be fined Dhs10,000. Category C firms will not have any work permits issued for at least six months.

The second time offender firms will be downgraded to Category C and will have no work permits processed for nine months and will be fined Dhs15,000.

Third time offenders will pay fine of Dhs20,000 and will be downgraded to Category C and will not be issued labor permits for at least one year.

Source : www.mol.gov.ae

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