rights duties of interns are clearly defined under uae law
Last Updated : GMT 05:17:37
Emiratesvoice, emirates voice
Emiratesvoice, emirates voice
Last Updated : GMT 05:17:37
Emiratesvoice, emirates voice

Rights, duties of interns are clearly defined under UAE law

Emiratesvoice, emirates voice

Emiratesvoice, emirates voice Rights, duties of interns are clearly defined under UAE law

Legal experts are encouraging students to approach the MoHRE if they feel they are being exploited at their internship.
Abu Dhabi - Emirates Voice

While classroom learning process is important in university education, internships are proving to be equally necessary as they provide workplace experience, according to career counsellors.

However, students allege that many companies are making them work for long hours without any pay, or asking them to work in positions outside of their study area.

InternsME, UAE's largest internship job website, received more than 17,500 applications just this year from students who were looking for internship opportunities.

What happens when companies are taking advantage of students who are "desperately" seeking for internship experiences? Who is monitoring the rights of students who want work experience?

Jean-Michael Gauthier, the founder of InternsME, told Khaleej Times that his firm vets the companies that are offering internships to students through their website. InternsME currently works with more than 1,000 companies who are looking for talented interns and to fill part-time and graduate roles.

"We spend a lot of time vetting the companies who come onboard with us and making sure to host quality jobs because the safety of our community is of utmost importance," he said.

"Everyone who is participating in the workforce in some way can approach the UAE Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation and file a complaint or communicate any mistreatment that they may be facing. If anyone is caught in a tough situation with supervisors and/or heads of departments, and if there are no possible resolutions, then he or she should approach the MoHRE."

Gauthier added that more than 90 per cent of internships on InternsME are paid and that the salaries vary depending on the industry and the role.
Students encouraged

Legal experts are encouraging students to approach the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE) if they feel they are being exploited at their internship.

Maisoon Sulaiman, advocate office manager, MBH advocates and legal consultants, said students who are doing internships have the same rights as full-time employees under the UAE Labour Law.

"Such violations and exploitations will have a place, if an intern lets them happen. From the beginning, right from the very first interview with the prospective employer, a candidate has to know his basic labour rights and ask related questions to his interviewer. Then, he has to make sure of implementing his labour rights and discussed terms and conditions, as well as nature of his work and wages in his contract/agreement before signing it," she said.

"If an intern is employed in a company officially, with the registered contract and labour permit under the youth or student category, his labour rights will be more important compared to other labour categories."

Naila Sarwar, a solicitor at TWS Legal Consultants, said that in terms of the pay of an intern, it depends on the type of the company and/or the industry the intern is 'employed' at.

"It is a widely held view that media and non-profit organisations offer unpaid internships while professional services companies offer a reasonable salary - in the UAE this can range from Dh2,000 to Dh3,000 per month," she said.

"The Labour Law refers to the employment of 'youth'. If the intern falls under the definition of youth, the maximum working hours shall be six hours per day with one-hour rest. They must not work for more than four consecutive hours nor is the employer permitted to retain the worker for more than seven consecutive hours in the workplace.

"College and university students who are sponsored by their educational institution are permitted to work part-time with the relevant visa. Expats over the age of 18 can seek short-term work permits up to 60 days, which may be renewed prior to the expiry date of the permit. Short-term work permits are not applicable to GCC or the UAE Nationals. The hiring of interns within a freezone has its own rules and work permit requirements and duration."

Source: Khaleej Times

 

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