Obstacles Remain for Women Employment

The Government often talk about providing more work opportunities for women. However, talking about that is one thing and actually working to make it happen is quite another. Take for example this piece from Arab News today:

Working mothers who spend eight hours or more at work want daycare services at work due to the distress caused by being away from their babies and toddlers.

Now you would think this brilliant idea has occurred to these women just now, but a moment later you will learn that it’s been more than two years since the Ministry of Labor (MOL) issued a law stating that businesses with 50 or more women and at least 10 working mothers must pay for daycare services to children under six years of age. As for businesses with over 100 women, a staffed daycare facility must be provided on the premises.

The mentioned above law sounds good, except for one thing: it has not been implemented. Is it possible that because MOL could not implement its controversial law to employ women in lingerie shops that they are having a difficult time now convincing anyone to take them and their laws seriously? Maybe, but it is certainly not an acceptable excuse.

If MOL cannot even force their fellow government departments to implement the law, and considering the fact that most businesses here have no idea whatsoever about something called Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), I really doubt that we will see a practical solution for this problem any time soon.

P.S. As far as I know, the Ministry of Labor and the Ministry of Social Affairs are two different things. Why Arab News decided to join them together to create a ministry that doesn’t exist is beyond my comprehension.

6 thoughts on “Obstacles Remain for Women Employment

  1. In Germany we currently have a huge discussion about daycare services for children under three years and kindergartens… but there’s just the question is just how the state can pay for it. When the companies have to pay for their worker’s children daycare services – no wonder they don’t employ more women…

  2. While the Saudi impulse to employ more women outside the home, the law imposing burdens on their employers for hiring them is foolish. Demanding employers pay for employees families creates a disincentive to hire women. Perhaps that’s the point.

    Also, socialist schemes such as this hobble businesses and make them less competitive. The businesses did not birth those children and are not responsible for caring for them. It is up to the employees to make arrangements for their own children.

    Now, if good labor is scarce and an employer wants to add daycare to its list of benefits offered to attract quality employees, that’s different.

    Also, burdening businesses with social costs skews the cost of goods and services in the economy so that the country can not reach the optimal point of production. Companies on the edge of profitability are bankrupted by these extra costs. Consumers buying those goods and services use them more sparingly because of their inflated cost.

    Instead of the socialist approach of everyone trying to get bigger slices of a small pie, you should take the capitalist approach of baking bigger pies so everyone gets more.

  3. I do not think that unemployment of women in Saudi Arabia is a problem among working women with children, I think it is much worse among single university graduates females.

    In the same time, women has the right to work if they wish regardless of being single or not. Yet, as Tantor mentioned, it does not have to be the businesses issue to provide daycare for the working women children. Paying part of the cost of daycare could be part of the benefits provided to such employees, but paying the full cost cannot be visible in the eyes of a business owner since it means less profits.

    I don’t know what does Tantor mean by the Capitalist approach to solve such problem. Any clarifications?.

  4. Is daycare center a good solution ?

    These Saudi working mothers should learn from their American peers.

    Let them read the following book and think.

    The Cultural Devastation of American Women: The Strange and Frightening Decline of the American Female (and her dreadful timing) (Paperback)
    by Nancy Levant


    In this book, Nancy Levant extends a compassionate rebuke to the American mother and career woman. Drawing upon her experience as a daycare professional, she offers insight into the thoughts, feelings, and diets of America’s children in daycare — all of which have suffered because of the woman’s repudiation of the traditional role of motherhood.

    “Mommy says Daddy is a idiot.”
    “Dad says mommy should cook dinner for us.”
    “Dad is never home.”
    “Daddy says mommy is never home.”
    “When’s mom coming?”
    “When’s dad coming?”
    “Why are they always late?”
    “Did mommy forget to get me?”
    “If they don’t come, can I stay with you?”

    Repeatedly quoting her daycare children, Levant opens a window into the family life of the contemporary household, and the contemporary woman who makes it. The perspective provided is unique and rare, as it is one that is seen through the eyes of the child.

    Humbly acknowledging her own failures as wife and parent, the author frankly speaks very directly to the women of America. She asserts women have largely rebelled against the traditional roles of mother and housewife, as these roles have been redefined by society and the media as repressive. While extolling the virtues of female liberation, she asserts, “The empowerment of women did come at a cost…”

    Levant lambastes the modern “entitlement” attitude that is so prevalent today and that is heavily promoted by Hollywood and television entertainment news shows. It is this attitude, she believes, that has become a staple of the American female psyche, to the detriment of her family. “The difference between the upper and middle-class, is that the former spends other people’s money to create wealth for themselves. We spend our money to mimic them.

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