KUWAIT CITY, April 23: Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ramadan season was a headache for Kuwaiti families due to the shortage of domestic workers and the presence of extra work during the month. sacred. The pandemic then came, increasing the suffering and becoming a real concern for Kuwaiti households with the spread of a disturbing and illegal phenomenon, which is that of “temporary domestic workers”, most of whom are law breakers and runaways from their sponsors’ homes. , reports the daily Al-Rai.
Perhaps what has increased the burden on Kuwaiti housewives is the high cost of hiring a domestic worker. It reaches up to 1,200 KD, despite the decisions that fixed it at 900 KD. This has been blamed on recruitment agencies and their exaggeration of costs, in addition to other reasons that have made a permanent domestic worker a rare commodity.
Some owners of domestic manpower recruitment offices attribute this phenomenon to three main reasons:-
1. The lack of rigor in the application of the law which penalizes sponsors who harbor fleeing workers
2. Not being strict with landlords who rent out their homes to groups of domestic workers, which falls under the category of “hiding a fugitive”
3. Impossible conditions imposed on expatriate families to recruit domestic workers, forcing them to seek help from temporary workers who have fled their sponsors.
The owners of the recruiting offices asked: “Who will guarantee the rights of the godfathers in the event of flight of their servants in the hope of a better financial return while working as independent servants?” Does the family hosting a temporary worker ask for her identity to verify her legal status?
Some of them highlighted a factor that may be overlooked by many, namely the national labor market in neighboring countries, which has been developed for the benefit of the citizens of these countries. They explained that some Gulf countries allow people of any nationality to enter their country through their international airport and stay there for a period of three months, during which time they can transfer their visa to any sponsor if they find work in the country. Therefore, some domestic workers resort to this facility to work there as domestic workers.
This is something their countries were aware of and took the necessary steps to prevent the travel of workers unless they had a business record. As a result, some of them play a game of deception by first coming to Kuwait, refusing to continue working upon arrival or after several months, and then asking to return to their country immediately or at the end of their contract. If approved, they apply to travel through specific Gulf countries and may agree to bear the ticket costs to reach their destination by traveling to those countries and finding work there.