Baker charges employer with discrimination

ABU DHABI — Saeed Raslan, an Egyptian working as a baker with a Lebanese bakery chain here, has complained to the Disputes Department at the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs that he was being discriminated against at work and not allowed to freely practise his religion.

By Nada S. Mussallam

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Published: Thu 21 Apr 2005, 10:44 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 7:06 PM

The baker alleged that he was not being provided sufficient time to offer prayer, besides suffering continuous ill-treatment and humiliation at the hands of the management. “He has complained of ill-treatment at work and continuous humiliation by the management,” a ministry source confirmed to Khaleej Times. The baker had sought the help of the ministry in getting his entitlements from the management of the bakery as he had decided to quit.

When contacted by Khaleej Times, Hussein Huteit, the bakery’s manager denied the allegations and instead, accused him of inciting unrest among other labourers.

“We have 150 labourers in the bakery and they all enjoy their full rights to take a break. He is the only one who is not serious and skips work for hours together without valid reasons. I have all the documents to show that this man was warned and notified several times for disturbing others and neglecting his duties,” Hussein said. He said Saeed, who joined the bakery four years ago, was earlier involved in a fight with his colleagues which was, however, resolved by the police. He is now trying to get Dh3,500 he claims the bakery took from him as bank guarantee following employment.

“His attitude is not acceptable at all. We have been in the business for the past 25 years and enjoy a good reputation for treating our employees well. The baker wants to create problems. He was recruited after the decision of the bank guarantee and he doesn’t have any proof that the management collected this amount from him,” he said, adding that the bakery filed a complaint against the Egyptian employee much before the latter did.

“The ministry has tried to settle the case amicably, but the baker was determined not to relinquish his alleged rights. When efforts to settle the matter amicably failed, we decided to refer the case to the Labour Court for quick settlement,” the ministry source said.



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