Wednesday, May 02, 2007

She is going home

In Malaysia, having an Indonesian maid is very common. They work long hours, no vacation, low pay: basically their working conditions break all the French labour laws.

She was only 16 when she came for the first time in Malaysia, working in my sister and brother's house. She is very cheerful, work hard, but she has many heartbreaking stories to tell: sick mother, poor family, lots of brothers and sisters, dropped out of school...

It has been more than 2 years that she hasn't seen her family and her homeland. Due to my wedding in Malaysia she extended her stay to help. But now she's going home. She said her father will not allow her to come back to work again, as for her age she needs to get married, raise kids, work in the farm. She told me she would like to go back to school again, there's no high level job in her town, a big city is like 6 hours away from where she lives.

I just wish that will be able to hold on to her earnings to her own benefits. Most then likely her father will take away everything from her, or she could be robbed on the way back home, or get cheated by the sneaky agent. She has a hard life compared to a lot of us, but she is just among million of Indonesians in the same situation.

I really believe that instead of helping her alone, the world should help her country to strengthen up. If they have enough jobs, even low level, manage to support their own families, there won't have million of Indonesians crossing the Malacca Straits risking their lifes and dignities, working illegally in their neighboring countries.

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