Manpower agencies in Qatar and other GCC states hope to urge authorities to allow them to provide maids on hourly, weekly and monthly basis to needy homes.
The idea is to provide maids for cleaning and cooking, mostly to expatriate homes that cannot afford to sponsor and employ full-time domestic help.
This will help those in need of part-time domestic help, and such maids can be brought from overseas, sponsored by manpower agencies.
The owner of a local manpower agency told local Arabic daily Al Raya that the above and other issues related to maids’ recruitment will be discussed at a meeting in Kuwait.
In comments published yesterday, Hamad Mohamed Afeefa told the daily that concerned government officials and manpower agency representatives from all GCC states will attend the meeting.
The two-day talks is to begin tomorrow and take up issues like runaway maids and mull ways to check the trend, Afeefa said.
Plans are afoot to set up a permanent GCC committee with members from among government officials and manpower agency representatives.
It would be empowered to sign mutual agreements with various countries to source domestic help, Afeefa added.
It would have the authority to blacklist a country if it refuses to comply with recruitment rules of a GCC state, Afeefa added.
A proposal to fine employers with whom a maid refuses to continue to work after the guarantee period will also be discussed.
In Qatar, for example, the period is three months.
“They (the employer) should share at least 25 to 50 percent of a manpower agency’s expenses incurred on hiring the maid,” said Afeefa.
Maids should also be fined for their failure to comply with their contractual terms, according to Afeefa.
Afeefa hinted that there are some individuals operating illegally as domestic manpower suppliers.
“Their offices are the bags they carry,” he said tongue in cheek. He said the meeting will also look into the root-cause of why maids run away from their employers.
“Unless we study the reasons in depth we cannot overcome the problem of runaway maids. The trend needs to be checked,” he added.
The meeting will also take up the issue of not barring any country from where to source domestic help, Afeefa added.
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