De­ci­sion to fem­i­nize women’s wear shops from Oct. 21 wel­comed

Arab News - - SAUDI ARABIA - RASHID HAS­SAN

RIYADH: The Min­istry of La­bor and So­cial Devel­op­ment said that the plan to im­ple­ment third phase of its de­ci­sion on fem­i­niz­ing and na­tion­al­iz­ing shops sell­ing women’s ac­ces­sories at in­door malls, out­door shopping cen­ters and in­de­pen­dent stores will start Oct. 21; the de­ci­sion has been wel­comed by women across the coun­try.

Em­pha­siz­ing that this third phase was to be­gin last Oct. 2, the de­lay gave both the es­tab­lish­ments and em­ploy­ers the op­por­tu­nity to pre­pare fe­male-friendly work­places in a bet­ter way.

The de­ci­sion comes within the ef­forts and the com­mit­ment of the min­istry to en­sure proper pro­vi­sion of suitable and sta­ble work en­vi­ron­ments, and ex­pand work fields for Saudi women in the pri­vate sec­tor, thus con­tribut­ing to pro­duc­tiv­ity and mo­ti­va­tion in the work­place.

It fur­ther said that the third phase fol­lows the ear­lier im­ple­mented first and sec­ond phases tar­get­ing stores sell­ing women’s ac­ces­sories such as per­fumes, shoes, socks, purses, ready-to-wear clothes and women’s fabrics, in ad­di­tion to depart­ment stores sell­ing only women’s gar­ments and other ac­ces­sories.

More­over, the de­ci­sion also cov­ers in­de­pen­dent stores that sell gowns, wed­ding dresses, abayas (cloaks), jal­abiyas (tra­di­tional dresses), moth­er­care prod­ucts and other re­lated ac­ces­sories, as well as phar­ma­cies with sec­tions that sell cos­met­ics.

Wel­com­ing the move Hayat Al-Mas­keen, a public re­la­tions man­ager in Riyadh told Arab News Wed­nes­day: “Fem­i­niz­ing these women-only stores in the King­dom is a great step and I sup­port it for cre­at­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for Saudi women.”

She, how­ever, un­der­scored that proper train­ing should be pro­vided to each em­ployee for ef­fi­cient cus­tomer ser­vice.

“We go shopping and pay for pur­chased ac­ces­sories ex­pect­ing good ser­vice in re­turn, but some­times girls in the sales seg­ment lack the re­quired skills; ful­fill­ing that will make the de­ci­sion even bet­ter,” she pointed out.

If­fat, a shop­per at a city mall, said: “We welcome the move; it will make shopping more women friendly, and deal­ing with women staff is a bet­ter idea.”

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