Saudi rights group accuses employers of sexism
It criticized companies requesting approval from the male guardians of prospective women job candidates
The National Society for Human Rights (NSHR) criticized companies requesting approval from the male guardians of prospective women job candidates, labeling the practice as sexism, Makkah daily reported.
General Secretary of NSHR Khalid al-Fakhry said: “No company, private or public, has the right to refuse prospective women employees due to their gender. The charters of the Ministry of Labor and Ministry of Civil Services do not state in any regulation that women require the approval of their guardians before they can work.”
He also added that the civil service and its departments, Human Resources Development Fund and the private sector all conform to the regulations set by the Ministry of Labor.
“Requesting a guardian’s approval as a condition for employment is considered gender discrimination. The Kingdom has signed international contracts holding it responsible for eradicating all occurrences and forms of discrimination against women.”
He also added many private companies ask for the approval because they fear being questioned by the Ministry of Labor, even though this would not happen.
“Moreover, when companies request guardian approval, it is due to the personal mindset and belief of the employer and is not backed up by the law in any way.
“Any woman who faces discrimination in any way may contact us and we will pursue her case. It is very important that women understand that they are not obliged to submit any guardian approval.”
He said he was “sad” at how women were being treated in society. “It is quite unbearable when a woman needs to prove her identity by kinship to her father, husband, or brother just to serve her own society,” said al-Fakhry.
He said humans of any gender have three basic rights, consisting of the right to work, the right to education and the right to health.
“Any attempt to obstruct women’s access to these three rights is considered gender discrimination,” said al-Fakhry.
This was originally posted on the Saudi Gazette on Dec. 23, 2014.
Three-day week for Saudi women in remote schoolsThe decision to cut the working week for women was taken in a bid to reduce road accidents Middle East
Saudi names six women as deputy chairpersons of Shura committeesPositions involve human rights, foreign affairs, and education sectors Middle East
Saudi women reluctant to claim rights, despite legal protectionExperts believe the reluctance on the part of women to claim their rights stems from a fear of the social implications of such actions Features
Shortage of Saudi women for textiles, tailoring jobsTailor shops are currently operated by male expatriates Middle East
Women educators facing ‘numerous’ challenges in Saudi ArabiaWomen’s sections at universities in the Kingdom face challenges, according to one female dean Features
Saudi Arabia records higher number of women forced to marry relativesThe Council of Senior Scholars in Saudi Arabia issued a fatwa in 2005 saying tahjeer and forced marriages were not allowed in Islam Middle East
Saudi woman 'arrested' at border for defying drive banConservative Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world which does not allow women to drive Middle East
Princess Ameerah: It’s tough being in the public eyeSaudi Princess Ameerah Al-Taweel’s stance on women’s rights saw her thrust into the limelight – bringing with it some ‘threatening’ feedback Variety