t Double Yellow's Musings: Maid Abuse in Singapore: What happened to Civility?
The warped mind of Double Yellow craves for humor everyday. His daily dose comes from The Straits Times, The Sunday Times, Today, Channelnewsasia, etc. He also thinks that because of this preamble, this blog will never get featured in the local media. And of course, please read the Disclaimer before embarking on the journey.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Maid Abuse in Singapore: What happened to Civility?

Our economy is growing. Jobs are being created. The traffic on CTE is easing or so we hear from the LTA. Amidst all this euphoria, we are reaching new levels in yet another sphere – maid abuse.

One case involved one Singaporean pimping her maid. So not only do we want help around the house, we also make some extra money out of these people who come here to make a living?



Detractors will say that the maid was a willing partner in the whole affair. But do we even think about the plight of these maids who come to Singapore drowning in debt and resort to things like prostitution? Do we even care? Or do we feel it is some other country’s problem? Is it a case of – “as long as we put these people in jail and fine them some money, we can go back to living in paradise”?

The second case involved an atrocious 10 months of maid abuse. The Singaporean abused her maid on not one, not two but a record 79 occasions. This is one of the worst cases of maid abuse in Singapore.



Really, what is with Singaporeans? Do we think these maids will become better helpers by beating them? Or do we get some sadistic pleasure? At the end of the day, why is it that we don’t see that these maids are human beings like the rest of us?

With two such extreme cases appearing in the same week, our media immediately comes to the rescue of Singapore’s image. Lest we be branded “maid abuse hub” by someone else, our local newspaper runs an article titled “Maid abuse cases declining” citing the number of maid abuse cases since 1997.



Thank you very much hor. Makes me feel much better that we are abusing less maids year on year. How this kind of statistics magically appears at the end of a week filled with extreme cases of maid abuses totally baffles me. While the report acknowledged that many cases are unreported, the issue of brutality level is totally left out of the analysis.

Some people with whom I have discussed this with say that some of the maids are really bodoh. They dun understand basic instructions and end up messing up things instead of helping. Some intentionally slack in their work and some others steal money. Surely, all these are problems that need to be addressed but nothing, and i mean NOTHING, gives us the right to abuse our domestic helper.

What happened to civility?

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