Singapore Law Maid Abuse
Even though the population of Singapore is 5.61 million but the people of this country rely excessively on the maids so that they can manage their household affairs. This is why the demand for maids in Singapore is found to be increasing over the years, which open the doors for employment for foreign domestic workers, also called maids. Every year thousands of maids come to Singapore from various parts of the world in order to get better salaries, so that they can financially support their family and loved ones. But there have been several cases reported in the past, which are related to maid abuse in Singapore.
Maid abuse is Singapore is not much common, but some maids, out of their luck, have faced some serious kind of ill-treatment from their employers and that behavior has crushed their dreams. They leave behind their family, children and country just to fulfill their dreams and desires, and therefore, they do deserve respect because just like any other profession, a maid also has tough responsibilities and job descriptions. Of course, taking care of the children and elderly people, cooking and cleaning every day and safeguarding assets of the house are not simple tasks to which these maids are accountable.
Even after knowing so much about all these tiring duties, some employers show no mercy, in fact; they use verbal, emotional and physical torture even to the simplest and unsophisticated mistakes made by the maids. One can judge the craziness of an employer by analyzing one of the maid abuse cases, where the employer physically abused her maid by a hanger when she wasn’t able to iron her clothes in a perfect way. However, the government took the action and made charges against the employer and she was fined $7000. This also proves that the government of Singapore knows the struggles to which these maids go through and therefore, the government has been busy in making laws against maid abuse in Singapore.
In order to protect the rights of the maids, also known as the foreign domestic workers (FDWs), the government has established a ministry, sanctions and charges in order to handle the situations. The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) in Singapore is one of the greatest reliefs for both, the maids and employers.
How Ministry of Manpower helping the maids from abuse?
The Ministry of Manpower, formally known as Ministry of Labor, is created to make and maintain the policies for all the workers, who come from foreign countries to work in Singapore. One of the main purposes of its creation is to look after the affairs of the maids in Singapore, as most of the maids are from different parts of the globe. MOM has the power to ensure the safety of maids, as well as, the employers, but it does focus majority on the cases of maid abuse in Singapore. Following are the ways through which the MOM is helping all the maids
- Open Communication
The Ministry of Manpower, Singapore is always there to entertain any queries by the maids and entertain complains. If any maid is having any trouble with her employer or facing any abuse, then she can easily contact the ministry.
- Safety Policy
There are employers who do not care about the safety of their maids and ask them to do jobs, which can be life-threatening, such as cleaning windows exterior surface. The MOM has especially made a policy regarding such tasks, where the employer has to sign an agreement that he or she will not add such tasks in the job description and also they will never force them to perform such duties.
Related Read: How To Keep Maids Safe In High-Rise Homes In Singapore
What are the sanctions and charges for the abusive employers?
The government of Singapore is all set to take serious actions against any employer who abuse the maid, no matter if the abuse is verbal or physical. On receiving any complains, the police department of Singapore is allowed to investigate and bring the guilty one to the court. The number of sanctions and fines/charges depend upon the intensity of abusiveness. The employer can be jailed for several years and he or she will also have to pay the fine.
The Case of Ms. Phyu Phyu Mar
Recently, a woman and her husband are facing court trials as they physically abused their maid, Ms. Phyu Phyu Mar, who used to work for Linda Seah Lei.
It is seen that Ms. Mar became the victim of a serious physical abuse by her employer, as she pulled out the her hair and hit her with a mobile phone, which gave bruise on the maid’s forehead, left hand and the left eye.
Ms. Mar used work in the beauty salon of Linda and during this whole incident, Linda’s husband, Lim Toon Leng, who is also the shareholder and director of the beauty salon, was also involved in the abuse. Leng punched the maid twice on the forehead.
The final hearing is still on waiting and the couple can be jailed for 3 years and they will also have to pay $7500.