No one has the right to insult you at workplace in UAE

In an interesting topic covered by Khaleej Times, writer Ashish Mehta talks about a common issue faced by the many Asians in UAE. Employees are often abused and swore sometimes by their stressed immediate bosses. People do not have the heart to talk about this issue as they are worried about losing their jobs. But, the law covers you here and the ignorance of law actually results in such incidents. Here is all you need to know about your rights in the workplace.

What does the Law say?:

An employer can not abuse his employees at the workplace as abusing any individual in the UAE is a criminal offence.

This is in accordance with Article 374 of the Federal Law No. 3 of 1987 in the issuance of Penal Code of UAE. It says; “Punishment by detention for a period not exceeding six months or by a fine not exceeding Dh5,000 shall apply if slander or abuse is transmitted by telephone, or face to face with the victim and in the presence of a third party.”

A criminal action may be lodged upon a written or verbal complaint of the victim or their legal representative with the police against the perpetrator of an offence related to insulting.

If abused badly, resulting in bad mental health, a victim can initiate a complaint against their superior (boss) who has used abusive language at the workplace. The colleagues as a witness can also support the complaint making the case stronger.

A copy of the said letter may be addressed to the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (the ‘MOHRE’). This is in accordance to Article 155 of the Federal Law No. 8 of 1980 regulating employment relations in the UAE (the ‘Employment Law’) which states: “If a dispute arises between an employer(s) and all or part of his/their employees and both parties fail to reach an amicable settlement, the following steps shall be taken:

1) The employees can submit their complaint in writing to their employer and also dispatch a copy to the MOHRE;

2) The employer shall reply to the complaint or claims of the employees in writing within seven working days from the date of receipt of the complaint. The copy of their reply shall be submitted to the MOHRE too.

3) If the employer fails to submit his reply to the complaint within the fixed period, the MOHRE shall mediate to settle the dispute amicably.

4) If the complaint is initiated by the employer, he must submit the complaint directly to the MOHRE.

“Punishment by detention for a period not exceeding six months or by a fine not exceeding Dh5,000 shall apply if slander or abuse is transmitted by telephone, or face to face with the victim and in the presence of a third party.”