Saudi Women to Be Allowed to Work in Pharmacies

Female pharmacists and pharmacy technicians will be soon allowed to work at commercial pharmacies, according to statements made by the Minister of Labor Adel Fakeih. The statements were widely reported by local media, but the the prize for the worst headline goes to Saudi Gazette who chose a lame pun to top their story: “Saudi women to man pharmacies soon, says Fakieh”. While women have always worked in hospital pharmacies, employment in commercial pharmacies have been limited to men. The move to allow women to work in pharmacies is part of MOL’s plan to lower the high unemployment rate among Saudi women. MOL began in January 2011 restricting work in a number of retail jobs to women, and it seems that the healthcare sector, largely dominated by foreign workers, might be the next target for the Saudization policy.