Migrant workers apparently come from poor countries and have been living in tough financial situation, thus they choose to work as maids outside their countries hoping they would find a solution for their crisis. However, this situation is getting more serious and controversial than before, the rate of domestic workers committing suicide is increasing. what households seek in Lebanon is not to help but slaves to serve them, and these maids go through hard work and mistreatment. We hear a lot of maids who escape and we read a lot in the press about the crimes committed by the maids, but we do not ask ourselves why all of this is happening?
The answer is linked on how the householder treats her maid, which in the matter of time the maid might commit a suicide and get her revenge. people are treating maids as animals, not realizing that they also have feelings and lives to live. Maids also have their rights just like any other person; violence or yelling at them is not the solution this may lead them to escape since they are not machines that can get all your work done at the same time. People should wake up and stop treating them such a way; they are still human that needs to be taken care of instead of treating them bad. They are here to help the house holder; their wasted rights should be defended as people should be punished for what they are doing.
Forgin workers comes from a poor background and she does not know so much about the technology and how to use electronic appliances, therefore the householder should train and explains for her the instructions how to use these technological appliances instead of shouting and beating her. When the maid starts working the householder should teach her gently and calmly, she could be ignorant, does not know how to read and write, and not educated enough so she needs time to understand what she should do. Trading companies are the one who provide households with domestic workers in order to help them with their everyday life issues, such as cleaning and taking care of kids, that parents usually do not have time for it. Workers coming from poor countries do not mind working and taking such tasks in order to afford enough money for their families back in their home country. The problem starts to rise when owners begin to abuse these workers and forbid them from rights, such as the rights of privacy or maintaining their good health or giving them a day off to rest.
Thus, the maids start to disobey their owners and even sometimes create other problems such as creating chaos and misbehaving. In this case owners become extremely abusive and strict, to a point where the workers do not have any other choice than to commit suicide in case they forbid them to go outside the house. The first right that should be taken into consideration is to enable them to contact their parents, provide adequate housing, and provide the necessary requirements. This type of behavior can even affect the children whom they might have some affection left for the worker. Parents are children’s model of behavior, especially when they are at a young age therefore they imitate whatever their parents do, and start on their own abuse the maids whether physically or intellectually, such as verbal abuse. This might also add to their burden of being abused, even by children. These are the main factors that push them to the edge of killing themselves.
Few mothers took this step and others followed and with time, however, need was not the only factor that led to the increase of the number of domestic migrant workers. Apparently we find one or two maids in some homes, houses are cleaner, sinks are empty and laundry is ironed but children are heartless and Lebanese-less. And when love is not received, it cannot be shown. Patriotism taught usually by mothers is getting extinct with time as they no longer discuss patriotic topics with their children due to lack of time. In addition, domestic workers who suffer from migration and their long distance stay, feel more attached to their home country. Both facts are negatively reflected on children; these factors also contribute in their everyday pressure are the oppression and abuse of their rights. Another shocking factor, when the boss of the house tries to have a sexual intercourse with the maid. Maids are not slaves, they keep working all day and night and finally when the employee of the house finds out what happen she fire her and put her in jail saying that she stole something from her stuff.
These maids are working to escape the extreme poverty in which they suffer in their own countries they must have some have someone who fights for their rights and needs since maids are not getting their full rights. The best way to avoid the problems suffered by the female migrant workers is to educate them about their rights safeguard and the dignity of humanity. As a conclusion maids are being exposed to frustration or deprived of achieving their goals or satisfies their needs. The poverty and the need of money has been subjected to injustice, this reflects the majority of committing suicide. Maids must have their rights and obligations.
Lebanese society should learn how to treat these women and they must appreciate and respect what they are doing, thus they should put in mind that these maids come from poor village and they do not know how to deal with new equipments; this is the responsibility of the house holder. Eventually, these maids are human beings just like any other person; they must get their full rights, needs, and they should be treated in a good and polite way. We should not forget that we all work to earn money and living and they also work for the same reasons, but the difference is in the level of education. They are removing the hard work and dirt so their work must be appreciated.
Courtney from Study Moose
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