Feel discriminated at work? How to overcome this?

Protection against Discrimination

There are no such anti-discrimination protections for employees under the UAE Labour LawOpens in a new tab. or in the free zones in UAEOpens in a new tab.. There are some provisions which are favorable to UAE nationals as per Labour Law and various ministerial decision and the provisions are as below:

UAE nationals have more priority than other nationals to work in the UAE. Foreign nationals can only be employed in the private sector if:

  • they have appropriate approval from the authorities – Labour Department.
  • they obtain a residence visa and labour or ID card.
  • they have professional competence or educational qualification required by the state.
  • there are no UAE nationals is available to take up a position, then the preference must be given to persons who are nationals of an Arab Country  and then the persons of other nationalities.


There are also certain limitation on the ability of companies to dismiss UAE Nationals.

Discrimination includes failing to make reasonable adjustments to the workplace, or working practices, that would enable a disabled person to meet their occupational requirements., such as refusal to employ a person, refusal to continue to employ a person, discriminating against a person concerning their employment or any term or condition of their employment. There are many programme or activities that can be undertaken to benefit the disadvantaged individuals or groups, including those mental or physical disability.

There are certain anti-discrimination provisions as per the Employment and Sponsorship Regulations of the Abu Dhabi Media Free Zone Authority. These regulations are to be aimed to create an equal treatment to the employees irrespective of gender, marital status, religion or disability and also employer in the free zone to follow the principle of non discrimination at the time of employing employees

Protection against Harassment

Assaulting another employee in an organization leads to dismissal. However, there are no such specific rules under the Labour LawOpens in a new tab. against harassment.  There are some UAE ministerial resolutions imposing sanctions on certain behaviors, including harassment. In DIFC Employment Law employer must provide and maintain a workplace atmosphere which is free from harassment, safe and without risks to employees’ health. It also state that employer  must not threaten or force an employee because of a complaint or investigation.

Reference: Afridi-Angell

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Deepak is a passionate blogger with interests in bitcoin, online marketing, and writing.

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