TDIC vows to protect rights of workers

Filed on March 18, 2011

ABU DHABI — In response to a Human Rights Watch (HRW) report, the Tourism Development and Investment Company (TDIC) of Abu Dhabi, on Thursday, said the company has a long standing and deep commitment to protecting workers’ rights.

The HRW had in a recent report elaborated on the poor conditions of workers at TDIC projects on Saadiyat Island in the capital.

The company in a statement said: “With reference to the recent announcement by the Human Rights Watch, TDIC can confirm that the company has a long standing and deep commitment to protecting workers’ rights and fully respects and supports the artists’ role in campaigning for this issue. However, HRW’s announcement pre dates more recent announcements made by TDIC relating to measures already taken to further safeguard workers’ rights.”

The company further added that TDIC has always worked with an independent monitoring consultant who provides regular reports on contractors’ performance and as part of its ongoing programme TDIC recently announced that a new internationally recognised consultancy will be appointed to meet the growing scope of work needed to monitor the performance of contractors on Saadiyat.

The appointed company will be announced by May and audit reports will be published on an annual basis.

Also, TDIC has in place a robust mechanism to ensure workers do not pay recruitment fees to work on Saadiyat. TDIC recently expanded this to include that contractors must reimburse workers for any recruitment fees they might have paid, the company said.

“TDIC respects and upholds the high measures introduced by the UAE Government to protect workersand believes that the UAE Labour Law is comprehensive. As a responsible developer, TDIC felt there was room to extend our commitment to worker rights, and created and implemented the Employment Practices Policy in 2009.

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