Look who’s complaining
Saudi authorities are mulling a ban on housemaids from certain Asian countries, claiming they are indifferent to the local culture and have been involved in ‘child murders and incidents of violence’. Meanwhile, the number of maids being abused in the Kingdom is growing at an alarming rate.
January 26, 2010 1:47 by Aarti Nagraj
Authorities in Saudi are now planning to ban housemaids coming from certain countries including Sri Lanka, Nepal, Cambodia and Vietnam, reports Arab News.
“The main reason for considering such a ban is that the labor recruiters in those countries are not qualified enough to supply housemaids that suit the local culture and tradition,” Ali al-Quraishi, vice president of the local Labor Recruitment Committee told the paper. “There is no proper selection process of housemaids to suit this market, nor are they given orientation before they leave their countries,” he said.
“They don’t even show any inclination to cope with local traditions and culture,” he added.
There are also security issues, according to al-Quraishi. “We have decided to be extra-careful when dealing with such foreign labor, especially after some reports that housemaids were involved in child murders and incidents of violence,” he said.
However, a source from the Saudi Embassy in Colombo told the paper that they had no news of the ban. “We are not aware of any likely ban on Sri Lankan maids,” the source said.
Considering the rising number of housemaid abuse cases registered in the Kingdom, it seems ironic that the country is worried about maids causing “incidents of violence.”
Earlier this month, the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE) asked Riyadh to conduct a full inquiry into the murder of Balakrishnan Dharshani, a 26-year-old maid from Kandy who was working in the Kingdom.