Saudi Arabia gives domestic workers more flexibility to switch occupations.

Saudi Arabia has made major modifications to labour rules, defining the situations that enable domestic employees to switch employers without the approval of the former employer.

These improvements are part of the broad reforms outlined in Vision 2030.

A ministerial decree had previously established eleven conditions in which domestic employees’ services might be transferred without the employer’s approval, including nonpayment of salaries and the allocation of risky or possibly hazardous jobs.

The most recent version includes two additional scenarios: when the employer switches the worker’s services to another company without the worker’s consent, and when the employer terminates the labour contract during the probation period.

Dr. Awwad Alawwad, President of the Human Rights Commission (HRC) and Chairman of the National Committee to Combat Trafficking in Persons, said on Monday that these Vision 2030 changes are an example of a well planned strategy that gives millions of expatriate labours in the Kingdom with expanded employment mobility, freedom of travel, and improved labour rights under Saudi law.

The adoption of these exceptional changes also represents Saudi Arabia’s long-standing concern for the global community, according to an HRC statement.

In addition to the efforts of the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development to strengthen labour legislation, the Human Rights Commission works tirelessly with the UN Office on Drugs and Crime and the International Organization for Migration to strengthen anti-trafficking actions in the Kingdom and better safeguard Saudi and expatriate employees from human rights abuses and trafficking.

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