via Khmer NZ News Media
By Ahmad Erwan Othman
KUALA LUMPUR, June 27 (Bernama) -- The Malaysian Association of Foreign Maid Agencies (Papa) has brought in between 2,000 and 3,000 foreign maids from several countries every month to meet the needs of employers in this country since Indonesia froze the service to Malaysia a year ago.
Association president Alwi Bavutty said that since the freezing of the supply of maids from Indonesia in June last year, Papa had begun to bring in domestic maids from Cambodia, Vietnam and the Philippines to meet the demand.
He told Bernama that currently there were about 300,000 Indonesian maids working in Malaysia.
He said most of the maids from Cambodia, Vietnam and the Philippines were non-Muslims because a majority of the demand for these maids came from the Chinese community.
"Although they are not as competent compared with the Indonesian maids who form the majority of the maids, I believe they will have the needed skill if they continue to be trained," he said.
The Indonesian government stopped the sending of domestic maids to Malaysia following several incidents of abuse besides the lack of employment perks such as a minimum wage and a weekly off-day.
Indonesia suggested that a minimum monthly wage of RM800 be set while Malaysia insisted that wages must be based on the market demand besides discussions between the employer and the maid concerned.
Supporting the determination of wages based on the market factor, Alwi said the wage determination must benefit both parties, that is, the employer and the maid, besides other factors such as the quality of services provided and the educational qualification of the maid.
"On average, the housemaids are now paid RM500 and above depending on the location of the workplace, whether it is in town or rural area. But if the maid gives quality service, the employer can consider a higher pay," he said.
When asked to comment on the statement by the chairman of the Terengganu State Committee on Human resources, Ahmad Razif Abd Rahman, that the state would introduce a three-month training scheme for domestic maids for almost 2,000 single mothers in the state, Alwi said Papa welcomed the suggestion.
He said the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry should take the initiative to monitor the situation so that the women could be trained although it would take time.
Meanwhile, several domestic maid agencies in the federal capital and Selangor, when contacted, said the absence of Indonesian maids did not have any impact on their business as they could still get many maids who were keen to work in this country.