Airlines is to recruit women as sales staff, in a bid to combat female unemployment,
it was reported at the weekend.
will employ women as ticket sales ladies in all parts of the Kingdom from next
year,” Saudi Airlines passenger services director, Saad Al Seuleiman, said in a
statement to the local Saudi media.
will be deployed in places assigned specially for them away from the main
terminals…they will work in places confined only to women…the policy of Saudi
Airlines is clear in not allowing women to mix with men,” he added.
announcement is a bid to combat female unemployment but comes after much
controversy recently when women were hired as cashiers in supermarkets
this month, Saudi clerics issued a fatwa ruling that women should not work as
cashiers in supermarkets, in a clear challenge to the government’s plans to
create more jobs for women.
agency AFP quoted the Saudi news website Sabq.org as saying the country’s
official fatwa issuing body, the Committee on Scholarly Work and Ifta, had
reiterated that it is not permissible for a woman to work in a place where they
mix with men.
is necessary to keep away from places where men congregate. Women should look
for decent work that does not make it possible for them to attract men or be
attracted by men," the fatwa said.
ruling was issued in response to a specific question about whether women
cashiers could be employed in supermarkets. It was signed by the head of the
Senior Scholars Council, and six other members of the fatwa committee.
Panda retail chain, which is owned by publically listed food giant the Savola
Group, had employed 16 Saudi women as cashiers in its Jeddah store as part of a
pilot scheme to test the concept of women working in a mixed environment.
Savola Group has faced a Facebook campaign from a number of Saudis who have
threatened to boycott the shop unless it stops employing women.
women, compared to men, are really hard workers," Panda spokesman Tarik
Ismail told AFP back in August.
everything goes okay, then we will expand the programme [in] the kingdom,"
September, Deputy Minister of Labour Abdul Wahid Al Humaid said the ministry
would not be put off by Islamist threats to boycott shops employing women.
Humaid also pointed out that women had few employment opportunities and urged
people to cooperate with the ministries plans.
Saudi Minister of Labour is Adel Fakieh, the former chairman of the Savola
Group, took over the job after the death of Dr Ghazi Al Gosaibi in August.