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Tamkeen received 730 complaints from domestic workers between 2020-2022

By Rana Husseini - Apr 13,2023 - Last updated at Apr 13,2023

Representative image (Photo courtesy of pixabay)

AMMAN — A local organisation that works with migrant workers stated that it received over 730 complaints from domestic workers between the years 2020 and 2022.

These figures were revealed in a study commissioned by Tamkeen for Legal Aid and Human Rights that was later made available to the press.

The organisation’s director Linda Kalash told The Jordan Times that the complaints ranged from “preventing domestic workers from travelling, and failure to pay them their salaries, among other violations”.

“We also received cases whereby domestic workers complained of being deprived of health treatment, holidays, food and contact with their families, as well being subjected to violence and insults,” Kalash told The Jordan Times.

Others, according to Kalash, complained of “long working hours or having to work in other homes by their employers without any financial compensation”.

The organisation’s report stated that there are presently 49,437 domestic workers in Jordan.

The nationalities of Jordan’s domestic workers, according to the report, were from the following countries: The Philippines, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, Ethiopia, Ghana, Uganda, Indonesia and Kenya.

“Our main focus is to ensure a practical and reliable protection and complaint system for domestic workers in Jordan,” Kalash stated.

The Tamkeen organisation director explained that many of the domestic workers do not have access to “reliable means to lodge a complaint in cases of violations committed against them by their employers”.

“The government also does not have the physical means to go to each home to check on the wellbeing of the domestic workers,” Kalash explained.

That is why, Kalash maintained, “one of the main solutions is to have an electronic system for complaints so that the government is notified and can take the appropriate measures”.

Meanwhile, the Tamkeen study listed several recommendations to safeguard the rights of domestic workers and their employers.

The government, the study suggested, should work on issuing a decision to secure insurance for domestic workers.

Other recommendations included adopting a unified employment contract available in all languages to be signed by both parties, and ensuring that a copy is kept at the Ministry of Labour for any future legal matters.

The study also suggested securing insurance policies that would cover any financial losses to the employers or recruiting offices in the event that the domestic worker refused to work.

The International Labour Organisation (ILO) defines domestic workers as workers who perform work in or for a private household.

The ILO notes that domestic workers provide direct and indirect care services, and are key members of the care economy.

Their work may include tasks such as cleaning the house, cooking, washing and ironing clothes, taking care of children, the elderly or sick members of a family, gardening, watching over the house, driving for the family and even taking care of household pets.


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