"Day Off" vs. "Time Off": Singapore Maid Clarifies Off-Day Norms in Domestic Work

SINGAPORE: A foreign domestic helper who turned 59 years old took to social media asking about the renewal of her Work Permit (WP).

According to the Manpower Ministry (MOM), helpers aged 50 and above can only renew their Work Permits until they are 60 years old. The maid wrote in a post to a support group for domestic helpers and employers alike. She said she just turned 59 and added that her Work Permit (WP) would expire in about three months. She asked others in the group who were around her age if they had managed to successfully renew their Work Permits (WP) or were about to commence the renewal process.

Another helper wrote: “At your Age Sis only your employer can help u if she wants to renew your WP,she can appeal and also make sure you we’re healthy”. An administrator in the group said: “My friend is 60 y/o. She just renewed few months ago. However, the first renewal application was declined by MOM due to her age. But employer appealed and luckily it was successful”. Yet another netizen also commented: “As long as your employer wants to keep you, no issue. It’s just that, the medical procedure is different to make sure that you are still fit to work at your age”.

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Other helpers who experienced the same issue commented on the post. One said: “Yes! I am 60 yrs. Old as well, we recieved a letter from MOM, they told my employers that get ready to send me back home, cause I already reach the age limit as a Domestic helper here in Singapore, my employers wrote an appeal letter, that they still need me, and work with them for 12 yrs. And thanks God my.work permit renewed for another 2 yrs. but need to go for medical check up, like ECG, Xray, blood test, as long as your physically fit to work without any health issues”. /TISG