Monday, March 8, 2010

MOHR half-day course : Maids like it, but not employers

PUSPA is an Indonesian maid who got pregnant working in Malaysia during her first stint. This is, of course, prohibited by the Human Resources Ministry.

It has now drawn up guidelines containing dos and don'ts that will be drummed into maids at half-day courses starting at the end of this month.

The first trial course was held on Feb 21 and attended by 300 maids and their employers.

Puspa was one of them. She tells the New Straits Times that the course is an eye-opener.

"If I had known this earlier, I would not have got pregnant.

"I would have taken precautions," says the 32-year-old.

Another maid, Kartika, 42, from the interior of Java, says could not make out most Malay words.

She wishes the trainers had spoken slower for the benefit of those who were new in the country.

"But it has helped me. I will no longer sign an agreement without asking the maid agency to explain to me so that I know my rights," she says in Indonesian.

However, employers sing a different tune.

One of them, Chang of Petaling Jaya, says the course is a waste of time.

"Some maids run away so often and we will have to go through this every time we take in a new maid. It's very troublesome," says the mother of two. She has had three maids in four years.

Another employer, Jayanti Kumar, 46, of Puchong likes the ruling against maids marrying locals.

"My previous maid had a secret relationship and she ran away.

"After three days, she called me and said she was married. My blood pressure went up because there was no one to look after my aged father."

Some of the other requirements are that the maids should only work at the address stated in the work agreement and their salary should be paid before the end of the first week of the month. - NST

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