Inspections carried out by the Ministries of Labour, Interior and Commerce and Industry in a number of shops in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, recorded 77 cases of violation, with men and women working together at female-only shops being the most prominent of them.
The offending shops did not separate the departments of male and female shop assistants, according to the Ministry of Labour.
The inspections were carried out last weekend with the participation of 20 inspectors from the Labour Office in Riyadh, 15 policemen and a number of inspectors of the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
Sixty-six violations were detected following the inspection of several stores selling products for use by women which violated the requirements of the women's work environment. The spokesman of the Ministry of Labour, Tayseer Al-Mufrej, said that
all female shops must separate the work area between male and female shop assistants as the labour regulations ban the presence of men at female areas at stores.
The Ministry of Labour has said that it will take punitive action against offenders of the female shops' requirements. The punitive procedures would be gradual, from advice to written warnings to fines. However, the Ministry of Labour will halt all its services to offenders who ignore these gradual punitive steps, while the authorities may shut down these stores as the last stage of warnings. The authorities have to date shut down 27 women's stores in the Eastern Province for these kinds of violations.