calendar Thursday, 2 December 2021 clock
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IN THE past, we used to hear it occasionally, but today we hear it almost daily.

My domestic worker has escaped!

The escape or running away of domestic workers, whether a driver, housemaid or cook, has been a worrisome issue for a long time, but now it has acquired a seriousness and proportion that demands urgent action.

Recruitment of a domestic worker is not easy – it’s a long and painful process in itself. We have to pay at least QR 15,000, and deprive our family of other comforts to raise the money for recruitment, in order to find a solution to a family problem.

The recruiting agent takes responsibility for a certain period, usually three months, agreeing to reimburse the money if the domestic worker runs away, but we are often surprised that after the end of the warranty period, the worker is nowhere to be found, and the amount paid goes in the wind and the employer is left high and dry.

The housemaid will not return to you again, because she has found an alternative and is working for somebody else.

The new employer is actually harming you, the person who had first recruited her, by giving a job to a runaway by providing a place of safety and a higher salary. 

Why should she come back?

You again follow the official procedures, from notification, to follow-up, and obtaining an alternative visa, and you enter the same cycle of no return, visiting manpower agencies, getting appointments and paying again, and it may not be the last and can be an endless cycle. 

These people escaping in the same way at night, it seems like an organized gang of people is facilitating their escape and safe operation.

How is the worker, who is working with someone, contacted and a new job agreed? How did they know the house? What are the incentives offered to her to take a risk and run away and move from a legal situation to an illegal situation?

The strange thing is that labour flight is seasonal, and wages are high, and the need compels some to accept it, unfortunately, without the slightest sense of responsibility.

I wonder how you feel safe to enter your home when you have a driver or a worker who has run away from some other place, who the police are looking for.

I am surprised how you are satisfied with the harm caused to others by giving a job to a fugitive worker when you know that the first recruiter paid a huge sum.

I am surprised how you sleep well while you are at home with a runaway maid and the security authorities are looking for him/her.

Why can’t we stop employing runaway domestic workers under the pretext that we need them? 

What if we took some social responsibility and stop employing them in order to preserve the security and safety of our society?

What if we participated in informing the security authorities of every fugitive who knocks on our door looking for work?

I think the world was fine and we solved many problems when we were more considerate and thought about others, but unfortunately, some are selfish and are creating problems.

Don’t contribute to harming others. 

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