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July 14, 2024

NHRC Chairperson Hails Efforts Made to Safeguard Workers’ Rights

Doha,

HE Chairperson of Qatar National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) Maryam bint Abdullah Al Attiyah has praised the exerted efforts dedicated to safeguarding workers’ rights, urging the continuation of work to upgrade the humanitarian conditions of all workers with respect to a wide range of human rights, health, and humanitarian fields.
To mark the International Workers’ Day, NHRC primarily intends to organize a seminar in coordination with offices of labor-intensive communities to explore the most prominent challenges facing workers, in a prelude to launch a labour campaign on workers’ health with the participation of stakeholders to raise awareness on the significance of protection from traumas, and highlighting the rights to health insurance and heat stress risks, Her Excellency added.
Protection from workplace trauma is part and parcel of occupational health and safety management in workplaces and aims to take all essential preventive measures against work accidents and occupational diseases, by ensuring the provision of the necessary means of protection for workers from injuries, awareness tips of using machines and equipment, providing essential training for workers and supervisors to stave off risks, in addition to conducting an integrated and overall analysis, as well as periodic monitoring to make sure that all employers adhere to the occupational and health safety requirements, HE Al Attiyah highlighted.
She affirmed that NHRC will keep raising the awareness on workers’ right to health insurance and ensuring that all workers receive the appropriate health care, along with the creation of a suitable health insurance system through regulating health care services in the State of Qatar so as to provide an integrated platform of high-quality health care services in the public and private sectors to improve the population’s health and ensure optimal utilization of health care services.
The campaign will include raising awareness on heat stress risks and adhering to the cabinet decision No. 17 of 2021, on the essential precautionary measures required to protect workers from heat stress and determine the working hours for jobs that require to be accomplished under sunlight, outdoors or workplaces other than shaded and ventilated areas during Jun. 1 until Sept. 15 each year, HE Chairperson of NHRC highlighted. She indicated that it is not allowed to embark on works during the period from 10am until 3:30 pm.
Her Excellency emphasized that the campaign would include field trips of companies to outdoor workplaces to verify employers’ adherence to the tips and instructions related to heat stress, noting the law that ensures obligations and measures that would protect workers from heat stress, primarily setting a shared plan with workers to further evaluate heat stress risks, in addition to mitigating their impacts and updating them periodically. Also, the measures include providing free-off-charge drinking water to all workers with a suitable cold degree during the whole period of working, shaded, and effective resting places that are easily accessible to workers to protect them from sunlight and elevated temperature during rest times.
Additionally, the measures include supplying workers with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) against hot weather, conducting annual free-off-charge medical tests to diagnose heat stress-related illnesses with the necessary preservation of test records and training paramedics, safety, and occupational health supervisors in workplaces so as to provide directives and first aid for workers, Her Excellency outlined.
HE Al Attiyah stressed that it is imperative to keep the climate change in mind as stipulated by the law by measuring the temperature with essential emphasis on assessing all climate factors such as sunlight, relative humidity, air temperature and wind speed, taking further action in case of any potential surge in weather indicators, monitoring the climate conditions in workplaces, suspending works in workplaces immediately when the indicator of the Wet-bulb globe temperature (WBGT) increases to 32.1 degrees.
Her Excellency affirmed that NHRC is committed to continuing the awareness campaigns, as per work laws, pointing out that workers’ pocket booklets have been translated into 11 languages and distributed accordingly, underscoring that the NHRC adopted a whole-of-government approach and partnered with stakeholders and the International Labour Organization (ILO) to enhance the health and safety of workers in workplaces.
NHRC organized a protection campaign from heat stress risks on Aug. 1 until Sept. 1, which included numerous field awareness events and distributed awareness-raising brochures and publications to workers in Arabic, English and Urdu languages, in addition to the essentials that provide protection from sunlight and mitigate temperature.
The campaign has succeeded in reaching out to 10,000 workers amid wide echoes in the community, social media platforms and the embassies accredited to the State of Qatar, with the NHRC presenting some conclusions and recommendations on protecting workers from heat stress risks and applying awareness mechanisms. (QNA)

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