Employment agencies play a vital role in assisting migrant domestic workers and employers manage their relationships. In fact, many employers turn to agencies for ‘expert’ advice on how to do so. But many agencies seem to assume the worst of domestic workers, reinforce negative stereotypes and violate their rights. Such oppressive practices are poorly regulated. Indonesian domestic worker (Siti) was told to sign off this list of rules which she was expected to obey. Among the list of instructions in this document, titled ‘Working Rules in Singapore’ are the following:
1) Don’t pray or fast unless employer has given permission
2) Must always work hard, initiative and automatic. Don’t be lazy and don’t tell lies.
3) Don’t sleep in the afternoon or go to bed early. All work must be finished before got to sleep.
4) Must work hard (wholeheartedly), honest, don’t steal and always respect your employer and employer family members.
5) Don’t argue and don’t fight back with employer or beat up employer’s children.
6) Must work fast, clean, neat and tidy. Don’t understand, ask employer, avoid spoilting employer’s things.
7) Do not smoke or drink beer.
8) You are not allowed to have boyfriend.
View the full document here:
Working Rules in Singapore