STORES in Saudi Arabia that employ both men and women have been ordered to erect barriers to separate their employees.
According to this report, the authorities have stipulated that the barriers must be no lower than 1.6 metres if they are to effectively achieve gender apartheid.
The order was issued by Labour Minister Adel Faqih and was verified by Abdullatif al-Sheikh, the head of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, commonly known as “Mutawa”or religious police.
Last December, the head of the religious police accused the labour ministry of failing to provide safe working environments for women in the country, saying many had complained of harassment.
In June 2011, Saudi Arabia required lingerie shops to replace their salesmen, mostly of Asian origin, with Saudi saleswomen. This directive was later extended to cosmetic outlets after women complained that they feel uncomfortable buying personal items from males.
The labour ministry said the decision to employ women in lingerie shops should create some 44,000 jobs for Saudi women. The unemployment rate among women stands at 30 percent according to official figures.
Hat tip: BarrieJohn