Dubai Municipality has intensified inspection and regulatory campaigns for over 500 educational and commercial institutions within Dubai to ensure compliance with safety and public health standards.
The action was taken as part of the Municipality’s annual ‘Our schools are healthy and safe’ initiative, which was undertaken in preparation for the upcoming academic year of 2023-2024.
Food safety in educational institutions
Dubai Municipality conducted a number of inspection campaigns across educational facilities, including schools, kindergartens, and nurseries to ensure food safety.
In addition to ensuring compliance with approved public health and food safety standards, the Municipality further ensured the presence of a health supervisor to monitor the food offered by other commercial establishments.
Around 216 permits are issued by Dubai Municipality to companies that provide food to educational institutions, ensuring that students are provided with nutritious, safe, and high-quality meals.
The Municipality also obtained 700 samples from commercial and educational institutions for examination at the Dubai Central Laboratory.
These samples included 400 water samples from tanks, swimming pools, and refrigerators to verify compliance with the safety and quality standards. In addition, the Municipality inspected 305 samples of food containers and water bottles from across 30 commercial stores.
As part of the inspection, samples of school uniforms were also examined to ensure they carried a certification confirming uniform conformity and safety before being sold and traded in the emirate. The Municipality revealed that it would notify appropriate organizations if tested samples showed discrepancies or when the safety certificates were verified.
Educational institutions in the emirate further underlined the importance of partnering with companies that provide school uniforms with verified certifications.
Preventive control procedures
Dubai Municipality implemented several preventative measures, which included inspecting buildings to ensure they met approved standards and specifications. They also evaluated the effectiveness of how institutions maintained water, air conditioning, and ventilation systems to ensure environmental safety.
These measures also included ensuring the presence of cleaning and sterilisation reports for tanks and the internal distribution system, as well as proof of preventive maintenance backed by approved laboratory reports attesting to its safety.
The organisation has a number of programs and initiatives in place to raise awareness of the need for health and safety, such as the ‘Health and safety ambassadors’ program for schools across the emirate. As part of the initiative, program representatives interact with ambassadors to offer advice on school facilities, protocols for handling violations and emergencies, and the use of cutting-edge technologies to monitor pollutants.
The ‘School food safety champion’ program aimed at educating students on the value of food safety and a healthy diet, was a similar initiative that included a series of workshops designed to promote healthy eating practices and reduce food waste within educational institutions.
With the latest monitoring campaigns, Dubai Municipality reaffirms its vision to guarantee a safe and healthy learning environment for Dubai’s students, while also promoting overall environmental safety and community wellness.