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Emirate of Ajman will penalize workers for being exposed to COVID-19 twice

The emirate of Ajman is warning its government employees that they will be penalized for coming into contact for a second time with anyone who has contracted COVID-19, state-linked media in the United Arab Emirates reported Thursday. 

Local media outlets said federal employees in Ajman will not receive paid sick leave for quarantine if they come into close contact with infected people outside the workplace or home for a second time. 

The UAE has a vaccination rate of 99% among eligible residents and a total death toll of under 2,200 from the virus, but the spread of the omicron variant globally has pushed the number of daily infections up. The United Arab Emirates, home to Dubai and Abu Dhabi, has seen daily cases jump from around 50 a day in early December to more than 2,600 a day this week. 

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A woman receives a Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine at the Guru Nanak Darbar Sikh Temple, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on Feb. 8, 2021.

A woman receives a Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine at the Guru Nanak Darbar Sikh Temple, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on Feb. 8, 2021.
(AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili, File)

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To limit the spread of the virus, Ajman’s human resources department issued a circular with a list of no-nos that would lead to salary deductions, ranging from a one-day pay cut to a 10-day pay cut for repeat offenders. 

The UAE-based The National newspaper said the offenses listed include failure to wear masks, being in crowded areas, shaking hands with others and going to the office after being in contact with someone who’s contracted the coronavirus. Supervisors will also be slapped with salary deductions if they fail to ensure employees comply. 

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The Burj al-Arab and a view of the Gulf emirate of Dubai on Jan. 10, 2022.

The Burj al-Arab and a view of the Gulf emirate of Dubai on Jan. 10, 2022.
(Giuseppe Cacace/AFP via Getty Images)

According to the report, a federal employee in Ajman who’s come into close contact with an infected person must isolate for a week or work remotely. Moreover, employees who come into contact with an infected person for a second time will also have to use their personal days off toward mandatory quarantine or take the days off unpaid. 

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