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Gov't vows to stop sending maids abroad by 2017

posted 22 Jun 2012 15:46 by Jump Penang

The Jakarta Post 29/5/12

Manpower and Transmigration Minister Muhaimin Iskandar says the government is preparing to stop sending domestic workers abroad as of 2017.

“We will do our best to provide comprehensive trainings so that they will be ready to enter more competitive industries when the time comes,” Muhaimin said on Tuesday.

He said if the ministry still encountered domestic workers by 2017 then stricter requirements would be applied.

“Our domestic workers will be available for employment again once the host countries agree to implement numerous requirements, such as fixed working hours, holidays and insurance,” he said.

He added that, so far, Malaysia had implemented regulations to guarantee those rights for migrant workers.

Commenting on this, Anis Hidayah from Migrant Care, an NGO concerned with issues surrounding Indonesian migrant workers, said the government had blatantly introduced a serious setback in this particular field.

She said that by categorizing domestic workers as informal-sector workers, the government had seriously violated International Labor Organization (ILO) Convention No.189, which defines domestic workers as formal-sector workers.

“President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono himself had said before the ILO meeting in Paris last year that domestic workers should be recognized as formal-sector workers. However, Muhaimin’s comments proves that the President’s speech was no more than empty words,” she told The Jakarta Post.

The government, via the ministry, had previously imposed a moratorium on sending migrant workers to Saudi Arabia due to the implementation of the death penalty toward a number of Indonesian workers there.