MOI bans thousands from sponsoring workers in labor law crackdown

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Qatar has blacklisted some 2,400 companies and 1,200 locals from sponsoring employees for flouting labor laws, the Ministry of Interior has announced.

Some of the erring companies and individuals employed runaway workers, while others failed to provide or renew their employees’ residency permits.

Several companies also refused to pay to send their workers home after their employment was finished, prompting some expats to stay and work in Qatar without the proper paperwork, the MOI said in a statement.

It added that inspections and a crackdown on labor law violations will continue:

“The (Search and Followup Department) herewith urges all citizens and expats to stay away strictly from dealing with absconding and runaway workers and from employing them in any way. The Department also requests to cooperate with concerned agencies in the country by informing about the violators…”

Meanwhile, amid the thousands of workers who were caught in the crackdown, the MOI said it did allow some 260 expats to change their sponsorship and remain in the country, 49 of whom were victims of abuse by their employers.

Absconding workers face up to three years of jail time and QR50,000 in fines, but all those who were detained have been referred to a special court that could order immediate deportation or recommend a change of sponsorship.

Previously, the MOI has said a person who gives shelter to absconding workers or employs him or her is liable for imprisonment and payment of a fine ranging from QR20,000 to QR100,000.

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Credit: Photo by Richard Messenger

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