India sets up shelter for domestic workers in Oman: Faleiro

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

PANAJI - The Indian embassy in Oman has set up a shelter in its premises for harassed domestic maids employed in Omani households, says former minister of state for external affairs Eduardo Faleiro.

“The embassy has arranged a shelter for women harassed in homes there. The domestic employees can stay there until they are repatriated or the problem is solved,” Faleiro, Goa’s NRI commissioner appointed to look after the welfare of Goans settled abroad, said at a press conference.

Asked if there were any specific figures on the abuse of domestic help in Oman in particular and the Gulf in general, Faleiro said exact numbers were not available but the Indian embassy in Oman had started a 24-hour open house to redress such grievances.

“Gulf countries have a similar culture (vis-a-vis domestic employees). I must add that some employers are also excellent when it comes to treating domestic employees,” he said.

Faleiro added that several countries, including Pakistan and Nepal, had banned their citizens from working as housemaids in Gulf countries. The Philippines had also imposed several restrictions on its nationals wanting to work as domestic help in the Gulf.

“India too has taken several measures, like no one below the age of 35 is allowed to work as a domestic servant in these countries,” he said. Goa has over the years seen a consistent migration of its work force to the Gulf countries with several thousands Goans employed in the region.

Filed under: Diaspora, Diplomacy, Politics

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