OFWs working conditions
The ban was imposed in January 208 due to reports of widespread abuse to Filipino workers.
According to the DFA report, “The working conditions of more than half of domestic helpers comprising 95 percent of OFWs in Jordan, can be considered unsatisfactory and problematic and need improvement.
The Philippine Embassy in Amman reported that maltreatment continues to be the number one complaint of OFWs, which includes having insufficient food, working for more than one household, and being overworked, with many working for more than 12 hours per day.
The Embassy also revealed that most employers do not allow their domestic worker to have a “day-off” as stipulated in the employment contract. Many are subjected to physical, verbal, and sexual harassment while some are raped.
Contract substitution also hounded OFWs, the report said. They are made to sign another contract upon arrival, reducing their monthly salary to only US$150, instead of the POEA-prescribed US$200. There were also several cases of delayed or non-payment of salaries.
“Because of the difficult work conditions faced by our workers, some of them become ill or develop health or mental problems,” the report stated.
Monterona said that despite these reports of abuse, the DoLE partially lifted the ban with no measures being instituted to uplift the conditions of OFWs in Jordan.
Moreover, Monterona said that DoLE Order No. 93-08, Series of 2008 issued by Roque is mum on the excessive fees and charges being collected by local recruitment agencies to aspiring HSWs.
He said that an aspiring HSW under the “Supermaid” guidelines would have to undergo a new training scheme that adds an unnecessary burden to the applicant. This scheme, which does not address the real issues and problems of Filipino domestic helpers, is “only a scheme to generate more revenues from HSWs,” he said.
The migrant leader said that though applicants are exempted from paying placement fees based on the Guidelines on Household Service Workers implemented by the POEA, aspiring HSWs bound for UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, Jordan and Saudi Arabia have reported that they were forced to shell out P5,000 to P10,000 ($113 to $226) to undergo training.
Monterona also said that the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority’s (TESDA) accredited training centers secretly operating as recruitment agents for aspiring HSWs are asking applicant-trainees fees up to P45,000 ($1,017) with the promise of a passing grade in the skills assessment. (Bulatlat.com)