Mixed reaction to maid shortage solution in Malaysia

Mixed reaction to maid shortage solution in Malaysia
A file photo of maids.

PETALING JAYA, Malaysia - The proposal to allow employers to hire refugees as domestic helpers has drawn mixed reactions from the public.

Designer Kelly Tan said she would not mind getting a day maid to keep her aged mother company and also help out with the housework.

"I've met some Myanmar women working at food outlets and they seem polite and diligent in their work. A few can even speak the local dialects," she said.

"It's not cheap hiring an Indonesian or Filipino maid these days as one has to pay at least RM8,000 in advance just to bring in a foreign maid. Hopefully, we only need to pay a monthly salary to 'refugee' maids with no other hidden costs."

Tan, 43, however said she would want to know the background of a prospective maid before accepting one into the household for safety reasons.

Q. Cheong, a mother of three who runs her own business, supports the move but hopes the authorities can address the issue of their refugee status.

"Refugees who are keen to work must undergo proper training. More importantly, they must be pyschologically sound to ensure they are not a threat in our homes. There must also be legal protection for both employers and the refugee-workers so that no one is taken advantage of."

Salina Ismail who works in the IT industry only said "Why not?"

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