Groups laud govt’s move to protect migrant workers

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 18 Jun 2009

PETALING JAYA: Non-governmental organisations have expressed support for the Government’s decision to make it mandatory for employers to grant their maid a day off in a week.

“The Human Resources Ministry has taken a positive step to help migrant workers,” Tenaganita director Dr Irene Fernandez said in a statement.

She proposed a standard contract with a minimum wage to make the migrant workers’ rights more defined.

The contract should include three categories of work — household chores, childcare and taking care of the elderly. Wages for each category should be different as it carried different responsibilities.

Suhakam commissioner Datuk N. Subramaniam said the Government was sincere in its move to give migrant workers a day off work.

“By giving them a day off, it provides an opportunity for growth in terms of skills development and keeping a close rela tionship between the community and the workers,” he said,

The Indonesian Association for Migrant Workers Sovereignty has called for the abolition of what it described as “abusive” maid agency recruitment and placement system.

Its representative Alex Ong said almost all the Indonesian maids recruited by the Malaysian Association of Foreign Maid Agencies did not know the terms and conditions of their employment because they were made to sign work contracts blindly.

Related Stories: Subra: Bosses can’t refuse requests for travel documents Employers against mandatory days off

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