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​Indonesian maids for sale on the Internet

This news is a few weeks old but several people have recently caused it to hit the headlines again. The Singapore authorities, the local Minister of Manpower announced, have accused an employment agency of publishing advertisements for the sale of Indonesian women domestic workers on an e-commerce site. In Singapore there are about 250,000 women domestic helps, the majority of whom come from the poor parts of Indonesia, the Philippines and Myanmar. The employment conditions for Indonesian maids are tightly controlled by legislation in the city state and are generally considered better than those in other countries. Nonetheless the ads on the online market place Carousell have unleashed a wave of protests: inserted under the user name Maid recruitment, some ads offered the service of various collaborators, while others indicated instead that these maids had already been “sold”. Because of the strong reactions they triggered the ads were immediately removed. The Manpower Ministry declared that it had presented a total of 243 denunciations to the agency and to the member of staff responsible for the advertisements. The agency’s work licence has already been suspended. 




St. Peter’s Square

Nov. 15, 2019