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Almutairi, A M S (2017) Protecting the rights of temporary foreign 'low-skilled' workers in the Saudi construction industry: a case for legal reform, Unpublished PhD Thesis, Department of Politics, History and Law, Brunel University.

  • Type: Thesis
  • Keywords: grounded theory; human rights; interview; labour rights; temporary worker; Iqama; Saudi Arabia; work visa
  • URL: http://bura.brunel.ac.uk/handle/2438/14845
  • Abstract:
    This thesis is a socio-legal study of the employment conditions of temporary foreign workers (TFWs) in the Saudi Arabian labour market in general and the construction sector in particular, with emphasis on low-skilled TFWs. This thesis adopts a socio-legal approach to the human rights situation of low-skilled TFWs working in the Saudi construction sector. By using migration theories, a human rights-based approach and Islamic perspectives on labour rights, the study questions the efficacy of Saudi domestic law in providing protection to low-skilled foreign workers in the construction sector. This is done by examining the current labour admission policies and the structure of the regulatory framework, including the ‘kafala’ system, recruitment procedures, employment law, working conditions, occupational safety and health hazards and access to the justice system. Grounded theory methodology is followed, with empirical data collection using semi-structured interviewing techniques in two major Saudi cities, Riyadh and Makkah. The data collected from the fieldwork provides the basis for understanding the current situation of low-skilled TFWs, by listening to their experiences. The thesis finds a link between the legal status of temporary foreign workers and the work visa system, which leads to a continuation of exploitation, mistreatment, discrimination, forced labour and the servitude of foreign labour in Saudi Arabia