SINGAPORE: A foreign domestic helper took to social media to tell her side of the story after her employers sent her back to the agency asking for a replacement helper.
In her anonymous post, the maid wrote that she had only worked for her employer for a month “because my madam is very fussy and everyday angry”. She added that before her employers gave her a release letter for her to be able to go back to the agency and work elsewhere, her employers asked her to work for another 15 days. This would also give the agency time to provide them with a replacement helper.
The problem the maid experienced was that she started with two months of salary deductions when she first came to work for her employer. Since she worked for a month with them, she only had a month of salary deduction. However, she would have an additional month’s salary deducted because she was being sent back to the agency. “I have two months salary deduction in the agency ,and I only have one month left. But because I go back to my agency and help me find another employer again plus one month deduction again”, the maid wrote, adding that she was also charged for her stay in their lodging until another employer was found.
In her post, the helper shared that she was not given any explanation for the additional 15 days she had to work, and she said in the comments section that she was not paid for it. She asked netizens if anything could be done about it, as even when she asked her agent about it, the agency did not give her an answer.
A domestic helper in the group commented: No choice sis. It’s better that way, than being sent back to your country. Having to repeat everything from the beginning, the deductions can also increase. Worse, now employers like to give bad feedback about helpers n make it difficult for them to return to work..even banned to work. If you still want to work, stay calm n make a little sacrifice for ur own good. Even if u report to MOM, nothing serious has happened to u, You will still be sent back to the agency, N the agency could be even more unhappy with you. Just wait until your replacement arrives n pray the new employer is better. Little advice from my opinion. Best of luck for u”.
Another netizen also said: “If u keep on transferring to another employer the agent will also keep adding one month tp ur current salary deduction. Thats the procedure coz you need to pay transfer fee. Most agencies charge the applicant. However there are some agencies who dont charge transfer fee from the helper tho. And its also a normal thing that you have to pay your lodging theres no such thing as free in SG . So if you dont want to have too much deduction u have to do your best to stay in one employer. Dont transfer. Goodluck to your next job”.
Last year, another foreign domestic helper who had the first three months of her salary deducted asked if she would have another three months’ pay deducted if she was sent to a new employer. In a post to Facebook group FDW in Singapore (working conditions forum), a netizen by the name of Steph Malditah asked a question on behalf of her friend. Her question was on the maid’s salary deduction and quarantine. In Ms Steph’s post, she asked if the helper was supposed to pay for her lodging and quarantine the second time around and have her salary deducted for another three months.
Ms Steph explained that the helper already had her salary deducted for three months from her employer. However, her employer no longer wanted to hire her and sent her back to the agency. There was no reason specified as to why her employer no longer wanted to hire her. Since the helper was sent back to the agency, during the time taken to find another employer, Ms Steph asked if she would have to pay lodging and quarantine fees again, as well as face another three months’ salary deduction from a new employer.