Bright kids inspire Pinay DH  to continue working in Kuwait

Marie Grace Abadingo, a domestic helper (DH) in Kuwait, wanted to return home when her work contract was not followed.

She asked the help of the Philippine Overseas Labor Office in Kuwait City (POLO Kuwait) but dropped her complaint when she thought of her children.

Dalawa na yong anak ko sa kolehiyo, sir (I have two children in college, sir),” she said when she informed me of her decision.

She added,”Magagaling ang mga anak ko. Magpapasensiya na lang ako hanggang matapos ang kontrata ko.” (My children are bright. I’ll just have to be patient until I finish my contract.)

 She had earlier complained that, based on the Kuwaiti labor law, she should have a day off once a week but this had not been followed.

Sabi ng amo ko ay isang papel  lang daw ang kontrata ko at sila pa rin daw ang masusunod,” she said. (My employer said my contract was just a piece of paper and they set the rules to be followed.)

To make matters worse, she was made to work 17-19 hours a day, leaving her little time to rest. She worried this would adversely affect her health.

Her employer also kept her identification card and passport. When she took the job, she was made to believe she would serve a family of four only. It turned out there were more family members than what she was told.

Accompanied by her employer’s representative, she earlier complained to the AMALA (Public Authority for Manpower—Office of Domestic Worker Affairs Section).

But when she realized that  she was receiving her salaries on time, she had second thoughts  about pursuing her complaint because it could mean the disruption of her children’s education. 

POLO Kuwait was informed of Abadingo’s decision. 

(Rafael E. Seguis, retired foreign service officer who is now with the Center for Humanitarian Dialogue, referred Abadingo’s case to POLO Kuwait.)

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