The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation has launched a platform to ensure employers in the UAE provide appropriate labour accommodation for workers. Establishments with 50 or more workers, where the wage of each worker is less than AED 2,000 per month, must provide accommodation for their workers.
The new platform allows employers and landlords to add information about the accommodation and supporting documentation that confirms health and safety guidelines issued by the Ministry are being followed. The system will help determine the validity of housing and its safety. The guidelines describe that each worker should be given a three-square-meter space. The accommodation should include dining halls, a medical service room, kitchen, bathrooms, and prayer and laundry rooms.
Other Guidelines Include:
- The material used to make bedrooms must be made of non-flammable material. Bedroom ceiling height should not be less than 7 feet. It should not be used to eat, cook or do laundry.
- The accommodations must be air-conditioned and the ventilation must also be good. Temperature, humidity and airspeed must be controlled in all air-conditioned places.
- Dustbins and safe spaces for gas cylinders must be located outside the kitchen in the accommodation. Landlords are required to sign contracts with pest control and maintenance companies to make sure that the accommodation and its water tanks are always clean.
- Landlords must provide properly distributed fire extinguishers, water pumps and hoses, install fire alarms and signboards showing emergency exits.
- This is part of a ministry comprehensive system to ensure health and safety guidelines are implemented at labour accommodation, and it also includes regular checks.
- Landlords can register their labour accommodation on the platform on the ministry’s website. Employers can register the leased place of accommodation and add their workers to the system, which will prove that they are meeting all the requirements and standards.
- The name of the facility must be placed on a clear signboard at the entrance of the accommodation in Arabic and English. Under the guidelines, carpets and rugs must not be used in the accommodations and beds must be provided to all workers.
- Special shelves for shoes must be placed at the entrance to the room, and, in the case of shared bathrooms, one bathroom should be allocated for every eight workers, equipped with the necessary bathroom supplies and safe sewage drainage with exhaust fans.
- Lighting units fixed in occupied areas and other areas must provide the minimum limit of lighting as mentioned in the guideline. All lights must be power-saving. All risky places must have a level of lighting higher than corridors.
- A bed space should be available for each worker, even during working hours. Each worker must be provided with a bed, side table and a lockable cupboard of 2 m height.
- Distance between each bed should not be less than 36 inches from all sides. The height of the bed must not be less than 12 inches. In the case of bunk beds, the distance between each bed from all sides should not be less than 48 inches from all sides, provided that the distance between the upper and lower beds is not less than 27 inches. Three-bunk beds are not allowed.