Qatar Air says female workers need permission to get married

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Qatar Airways female employees are required to gain permission from the airline to get married or change their marital status as part of their contract of employment, it was reported on Tuesday.

Contracts also state female employees must also inform the company if they become pregnant, which may result in the termination of their employment.

The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF), which represents around 4.5 million transport workers in 150 countries, released extracts of what it claimed are part of the standard terms and conditions of a standard hiring contract for thousands of Qatar Airways female workers.

It read: “You are required to obtain prior permission from the company, in case you wish to change your marital status and get married. And: The employee shall notify the employer in case of pregnancy from the date of her knowledge of its occurrence.

“The employer shall have the right to terminate the contract of employment from the date of notification of the pregnancy. Failure of employee to notify the employer or the concealment of the occurrence shall be considered a breach of contract.”

The ITF is currently in Canada to lobby the ICAO (the International Civil Aviation Organization) to take action on what it termed “flagrant abuses of aviation workers’ labour rights” by carriers based in Qatar and the UAE.

Attending the ICAO’s 38th General Assembly in Montreal, which runs from September 24 to October 4, the ITF claimed the 70,000 or more workers who work for the Gulf’s three largest carriers “do not enjoy the basic labour rights (including freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining) which apply in their home countries and in virtually all the nations whose airlines compete with Emirates, Etihad and Qatar Airways.”

“The fact is that these companies are making a fortune from the efforts of hardworking staff who, undefended, can be discharged and deported on a whim,” ITF president Paddy Crumlin said.

ITUC general secretary Sharan Burrow added: “Nations and companies cannot continue to turn a blind eye to abuses of workers in Qatar. International pressure is growing, from the ILO to the UN Special rapporteur on migrant rights the spotlight is on companies in Qatar to take responsibility for workers’ rights and follow global rules.”

Earlier this year, Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker addressed the issues the ongoing criticisms of the Gulf state’s labour policies by international trade union bodies.

“If you did not have unions you wouldn’t have this jobless problem in the western world… It is caused by unions making companies and institutions uncompetitive and bringing them to a position of not being efficient,” Al Baker told Arabian Business.

“If you go and ask the politicians in most of the countries in the western world they would love to have the system we have: where the workers have rights through the law but they do not have rights through striking and undermining successful institutions that provide jobs to their knees,” he added.

Last month, the International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF), which represents around 4.5 million transport workers in 150 countries, hit out at Qatar’s offer to move the UN’s International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) from Montreal to Doha, citing its banning of trade unions as a negative factor.

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Posted by: shaheen

I was reading a comments section of an article about Airlines and how passengers rated their Air hostesses. The male passengers seemed to be making comments as if they were voting for Ms World. Many male commenters were rating the air hostesses on attractiveness, slender bodies, and age. American airlines have air hostesses who are aged 50+ so got a poor rating. It seems that some Airlines provide glamorous looking cabin crew like inflight entertainment to attract passengers. It's a marketing strategy. In the west the labour laws are different and it is more difficult to terminate staff. The Gulf Airlines seem to be ageist and when cabin crew reach their sell by date I guess they don't get their contract renewed.

Posted by: Non-Muslim

"Qatar Airways female employees are required to gain permission from the airline to get married"
I just informed our company travel agent to add QR to our company's internal airline black list.

Posted by: Non-Muslim

@ Human Being
Posted Saturday, 28 September 2013 11:07 AM - Dubai
Unfortunately, you could not be more wrong than with your assuming of "hate" for "your" region! Much to the contrary, it is, but I and MY company are not only talking about (not only) basic human rights, but we are living it. And our corporate governance (we just call them "basic principles") not only fosters the professional development of our employees, but we also let our "family members" decide themselves if they want to get married or get pregnant. We even have a "company kindergarten".
And I do hate to hate! Therefore I am a "hate-free zone".

Posted by: Human Being

From the name on your comment anyone can understand your hate and nothing but unwanted hate for this region, its people and anything and everything that is related to this region. You can surely boycott QR and all other emerging and raising Middle Eastern carriers. The percentage of those like you are insignificant and every day huge percentage of people from around the world are putting M.Easter carrier on their liked list. Enjoy the service of under rated airlines.. haha

Posted by: SPP

Good job...If more and more people react like you did, it will bring some sort of humanity - no, I am sorry - sense to the employers of that part of the world.

Posted by: Andy

While locals are encouraged to get married and have kids non-locals are discouraged as they are used labour to complete the tasks that the locals are unable to complete. Sad but true. The advantages favor the locals and are not in favor of the non-locals. This is not just in Qatar but the rest of the Gulf Countries.

Posted by: James

There is even worse to this!! Those female employees in QR, even after leaving in good terms and completing their contracts in working hard for many years, they still need a permission somehow to come back to the country and get married to someone who resides in Qatar!! If they want to come back within 2 years, they ll have to get a No Objection Certificate from the airline which is insane! the problem is their big boss never releases the certificate if the employee is to come back for this purpose or even to change a job is the same story! Hundreds got refused to change jobs or get married during or after their time in QR...
A lot of people have suffered and continue suffering....

Posted by: Omer bin Abdulaziz

Bahrain is much better than the rest in the GCC.

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