Labour Inspection in UAE

Labour inspection is a public function that is at the core of effective labour law, providing a wide range of powers and functions. The core of labour inspection activities includes the promotion and execution of decent working conditions, safety and health standards, and respect for fundamental values and rights at work. To maintain acceptable working conditions and a safe workplace, these functions should be balanced and regulated as part of a complete compliance strategy.

Labour inspection systems particularly in developing nations face a few difficulties in the need for greater financial resources, better equipment and training, more inspectors who are properly qualified, and improved recruitment practices.

In UAE the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs conducts a regular inspection to compile a report and verify its adherence to the law.

Only special inspectors associated with the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs who have the authority and powers outlined in this Law will conduct labour inspections. Labor inspectors must carry identity cards issued by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs at all times.

The labour inspectors shall take an oath in front of the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, that they will follow the law, carry out their duties honestly and faithfully, and even after leaving the service, they will not disclose any trade secrets, patent rights, or other secrets that they learn while performing their duties.

The following are the powers that labour inspectors shall have:
  • To enter any firm at any time of day or night as long as it is within business hours without giving prior notice.
  • Ensure the observance of this Law’s provisions, notably those concerning employment conditions, pay, and worker protection while performing their jobs, as well as issues on employee health and safety, the employment of juveniles, and women.
  • Examine and obtain copies of any documents that must be maintained in compliance with the provisions of the Labour Law and any decisions taken in its execution.
  • Provide technical information and guidance to employers and employees so they can implement the law’s requirements as effectively as feasible.
  • Make the proper recommendations in this regard and notify the responsible authorities of any flaws that the current legislation does not appropriately address.
  • Interrogate the employer or the employees about any issues relating to following the law’s requirements, either alone or in the presence of witnesses.
  • Keep a record of any offences against this Law or its executive rules and orders.
What are the special training sessions for labour inspectors planned by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs?
  1. Organisational guidelines for inspection visits and interactions with businesses and employees.
  2. Methods of checking registers and books.
  3. Educating and aiding employers in the interpretation and application of legal documents, as well as the benefits of doing so.
  4. Industrial technologies and tools for preventing occupational diseases and accidents.
  5. The effectiveness of production and how it affects the maintenance of favourable working conditions.

If the inspector finds any violations of Law, rules, or executive orders while conducting an inspection. The inspector shall document any violations and submit them to the competent Labour Department so that the Department will take the appropriate action against the offender. The labour inspector may ask the police and other administrative authorities for assistance if necessary.

The local area’s chief labour inspector prepares a monthly report on labour inspection activities, facilities inspected, and the number and types of violations committed. Additionally, an annual inspection report is prepared that includes his suggestions and comments, as well as the findings and impacts of the inspection. A copy of monthly and annual reports is send to the labour department.

The Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs created special forms for violation reports, inspection registers, reminders, and warnings. It will outline the guidelines required for the maintenance and use of such forms and distribute them to the local labour departments.

This blog is based on UAE Federal Law no.8 of 1980