No, I’m not talking about my maid woes. She’s fine so far. I’m talking about my sister’s maid woes.

Second sister’s maid’s tenure of 2 years has ended. Not wanting to renew it, my sister went to apply for a new one about 2 months ago. She timed it so that the new maid would arrive in time to replace the new one. Almost near the time for the new maid’s arrival, she was informed that the new maid she had picked had changed her mind about  coming to Malaysia to work and preferred to go to Hong Kong instead so second sis had to pick another new maid. Hmmm strange that they are allowed to change the mind after being picked and processing halfway.

By this time, the old maid’s time was up so second sister is left with none. She now has to take in a temp maid at a daily rate till the new maid that she picks arrives in another 1-2 months time. The temp maid is a reject Cambodian maid. The employer’s whom she was supposed to work for rejected her because of language problems, because she did not know how to operate a washing machine and because she did not know how to lay out a table. “I hired a maid to help me out not to give me more work!” Thats what the employer said as told by the agent.

My sister thinks the temp maid is ok so she has decided to keep her. This means that she has to apply to transfer her from the other employer to herself. The process takes about 2 months. In the meantime she has to keep on paying the daily rate.

I think the agent benefits from the entire process. They do not lose out at all. They benefit if the maid that they promised fails the medical or changes their mind after being picked (like dat oso can). Why? Because then employers are in a quandary and those who are in urgent need, have no choice but to pay more (eg: pay a daily rate). They benefit when those employers take in a temp maid. Imagine paying a higher daily rate for a maid that someone else rejects. This way you “train” the maid for 1-2 months while waiting for your new maid. Mind you, you have to “pay” to “train” ok? And the agent probably gets to recycle this temp maid or inform the next employer that they have a well trained maid for others who need them urgently. And then as in my sister’s case, if you decide to take in the reject maid, you pay a daily rate while waiting for the transfer.

Well anyway, back to sister’s Cambodian maid. She looks like a sweet young girl with a smiley face but she doesn’t speak English or Malay. She does not understand what is breakfast, lunch or dinner. And she has no previous experience so sister has to teach her everything. Looks like second sis is going to be very very busy in the next few months. Training a new maid plus she has a kid who is taking PMR and another doing SPM and another Std 5 kid. Two major exams. Boy oh boy is she going to be stressed. Poor sis.

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