2 Feb 2019

Maid's (FDW) employers faced unfair policies

Content page - All topics
Special Needs.2
so many Bruises on my girl
Why set up a blog?
Who earns lesser than FDWs?

Do more to protect interests of employers, Straits Times, 29 Jan 2019
It is difficult not to disagree with the report by the Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics and Hong Kong-based anti-trafficking group Liberty Shared (Report suggests maids at risk of forced labour; Jan 16).

First, the report was based on 2,832 complaints it received from April 2017 to March last year, instead of general opinions of foreign domestic workers (FDW) in Singapore.  Basing the conclusion of forced labour on only about 1 per cent of the 250,000-strong FDW population here lodging complaints raises a red flag. These should instead be treated as anomalies due to irresponsible employers.

Second, FDWs certainly do not fit the International Labour Organisation's definition of forced labour, which is described as a person "under the menace of any penalty and for which (he) has not offered himself voluntarily".

While a small proportion of employers do impose their own penalties on their FDWs, these are illegal and are dealt with legally.  Furthermore, the work FDWs do, such as cleaning, cooking or taking care of elderly people or children, involves tasks that they are expected to do and is therefore voluntary.

I am mostly flabbergasted by suggestions such as allowing FDWs to switch employers freely with clear notice periods (More protections suggested; Jan 16). Doing so will put a great burden on prospective employers who have to put down significant initial payments, such as for placement fees and airline tickets, to bring the FDW here.

While extending the Employment Act to allow regulated working hours, sick leave or overtime pay are commendable ideas, these are not feasible. Let us not forget that these FDWs work and sleep in the employers' houses, where resources are also being spent for their well-being.

The Government has also introduced various measures to improve the working conditions for FDWs, such as a weekly rest day.

More should be done to protect the interests of FDW employers instead. Scouring websites, I have observed that there appears to be more complaints from helpless employers than from FDWs.

Charles Yast

Winter: The law is in favour of FDWs.  Instead of punishing them, deter them for causing further harm and damages, the law is encouraging FDWs to do more, at our expense.  Year 2016 (click), there have been many cases of maids/FDWs not severely punished by Spore law .... what they did were either lightly punished or got away (scot-free).  Bad/abusive employers have been placed in limelight (high media exposure), fined/punished severely (1.5 to 3 times more than a FDW) and living in Spore without a good second chance (born, raised and educated here, unless they migrate, shake off all those who know them).    

The start of year 2017, below happened to the vulnerable children.  Not many would want to entrust kids/elderly and property to live-in strangers (FDWs) if one's income can suffice.  Employing a FDW isn't that cheap.  If you've more than one kid then it makes money sense to have FDWs - cheaper than childcare centres. A lot of families are forced to take calculated risks just to make ends meet - dual income.  

If you've read my blog, you'll know I have no BETTER choice.  Govt, provide an affordable special needs daycare centre (nearby) for my young teen and I'll be the first employer to kick FDW out of my life.  No doubt FDW allowed me to earn an income and made me break free from the tag of "eye-sore low income group" but having FDW isn't desirable, something worth it or to boast about in my life.  The harsh MOM polices and unfair law made FDW like moles in my life.

Filipino maid jailed for ill-treating employer's three young daughters, Straits Times, 3 Jan 2017
Angry with her employer's children for bed-wetting on separate occasions, a Filipino domestic worker used a rubber band to hit their private parts.  She also pinched the area. (Winter: That's painful, why FDW simply not punished severely?  Why so kind to FDWs?)

On Tuesday (Jan 3), Gernalyn Saraza Mutas, 30, was sentenced to 30 months' jail after pleading guilty to two counts of child abuse sometime in mid-November 2015. The two girls were then aged five and two.

Another charge of forcefully grabbing the neck of her employer's 10-year-old daughter with her hand was taken into consideration in sentencing.  A district court heard that Mutas, who is a trained midwife, had worked for the family for about three years before the offences were discovered.
The victims' parents were in Malaysia on a holiday on Nov 17, 2015 with the two-year-old and her younger brother when the mother noticed injuries on the girl's private area when changing diapers.

The victim disclosed that the maid, whom the children called "Kakak Lyn", had caused the injuries.

The father asked his five-year-old daughter if she had been similarly ill-treated as the girl had been complaining that it hurt when she urinated.   He examined her and found that she had bruises on her private area too.  Two abrasions each were found on the girls when they were sent for medical examination .

Investigations showed that the incident happened sometime in mid-November 2015, when Mutas was sleeping in the same bedroom as a 28-year-old Filipino domestic helper, who was to replace her, and the children.

The five-year-old woke her up and said that she had urinated on her bed.  Mutas was angry with the victim and committed the offence, hurting the girl.  On another occasion in mid-November 2015, Mutas told the two-year-old to go to the toilet. But she did not make it in time and urinated on her underwear.
After washing her up, Mutas warned the girl not to wet her pants again. She took a rubber band and shot it at the the victim's vulva area and pinched her on the area before putting a diaper and underwear on the girl. The victim cried.

The older girl had told a doctor at the Child Guidance Clinic that she was fearful of the maid and did not dare to tell anyone about the abuse. The maid had threatened to beat her if she reported the abuse to her parents.

Winter:  This is unfair.  If one day MOM ruled that FDWs should get a room at the expense and inconvenience of employers, do you agree and would stomach the fact that ministers/PAP are treating foreigners better than Singaporeans? 
Training needed for maids tasked to care for elderly, Straits Times, 12 Sep 2016
The case of domestic worker Murni Panengsih ("Jailed for assaulting employer's mum, 96"; last Tuesday) highlights the pressing need to address several issues, such as the lack of training for maids hired to look after the elderly and the high levels of stress the workers face.

While Murni's inability to cope with work and mental stress is certainly no excuse for her actions, we wish to raise the issue of the lack of proper training for domestic workers, especially those who have to care for the elderly suffering from dementia and other complicated health problems.   (Winter:  not ready to work, too princess to take stress = employers' problem?  To train and screen a maid, it is our obligation, not agencies?  Why are employers paying so much agency fee yet FDWs are unsuitable/of poor quality?  Should MOM have another category of FDWs who are trained and prepared to work for special needs households?  There are courses for FDWs/caregivers but no prior screening to ensure FDWs are mentally prepared and willing be employed.  Employers certainly don't want to cry over spilled milk so what policy is available to protect employers, ensure the FDWs are mentally suitable before agency fees are paid?  Also, any document to be signed by FDW after she has been mentally screened by agency and given description of work scope?  Activists are keen to condemn employers.  Many don't care that we're helpless and lack of support.  Many don't understand there are bad FDWs because most are not shone with spotlight, compared to bad employers... severely screwed and reported.)

Caring for the elderly comes with its fair share of challenges and requires specific knowledge and skills. A domestic worker who does not receive proper training and is expected to be the main caregiver will find it difficult to cope with the complex demands of eldercare.

Murni's assigned lawyer said a psychiatrist had diagnosed the maid with adjustment disorder and stated that her mental illness contributed significantly to her offences. Her stress levels were compounded by round-the-clock supervision of her elderly charge.

In a health and well-being research study conducted by the Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economicslast year, almost a quarter of the 700 domestic workers interviewed suffered from mental problems. And only 40 per cent of them enjoyed a weekly day off.

The study also reveals that "having sufficient rest, one's own room to sleep in, a stable social network and adequate nutritional and medical attention are crucial for good mental health" in foreign domestic workers.  (Winter:  This activist obviously hasn't live in a HDB flat with a family and maid.  This freak doesn't look at the limited space of HDB flats.  Giving FDW a room and the employer/children/elderly sleep in the living room or improper place, makes sense?  Anybody insane to do the opposite, do a big sacrifice by allowing FDW to enjoy life better than you?  This isn't about basic needs, it is about FDWs/Activists demanding a luxury life, giving FDWs the moon... so unrealistic and ridiculous!  Activists are just trying to ruin Spore and pointing fingers at the unprotected employers.  Why HDB isn't targeted?  Anybody with a clear mind would know employers didn't build such small and expensive flats.  We've no organisation to protect and stand up for us so employers deserved unfair treatment and pro-maid policies?)

Singapore is an ageing population, and a White Paper released in 2012 projected the number of domestic workers to increase to 300,000 by 2030. Domestic workers will continue to be hired to provide essential caregiving duties to our young and elderly.

It is important that issues such as caregiving duties be addressed holistically, including the training of domestic workers, their welfare and living conditions.

Sheena Kanwar (Ms)
Executive Director
Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics

Ensure responsible maid employers are not penalised, 16 Dec, ST Forum
There needs to be a discussion on the employer-maid working relationship.

While there are laws to protect the welfare of foreign domestic helpers here, there also needs to be laws to protect employers' vulnerable family members from being abused by maids.  There is no foolproof process to assess a maid's character, reliability and sense of responsibility. For the employer to select a good domestic helper, luck is involved.

Maids may also lie in order to find an easier job, for example, saying they are afraid of animals so that they will not need to care for pets.  They may also change their minds when they discover the work environment is not to their favour, such as having to serve a huge family. They may then choose to break their contract.  This has a tremendous impact on families who require help urgently.

If the maid decides to break her contract, are there laws to protect the employer?  The authorities should come up with a fairer employment contract, with the aim of protecting maid employers from being caught in a jam when their maid chooses to break the two-year contract.

For instance, if the maid breaks her contract, she should not be entitled to an air ticket home.  This would be fairer as it does not lean so much in favour of the maids, giving them the chance to break their contract at any time. Let us not penalise responsible maid employers.

Ada Chan Siew Foen (Ms)

Sep 2015
Winter:  Recently an Indonesian was found guilty to 'force' a 14 years old boy to have sex with her.  She was only given a light 10 months sentence.  Judge knew maid has been tested positive for Chlamydia trachomatis, a sexually transmitted disease yet chose to pass a light sentence for her evil intention (ruin a boy's life).  
If a man raped a minor (girl) what will be his lightest sentence?  Certainly not 10 months!
How come the mandatory FDW medical check up didn't show maid has sexually transmitted disease?  This maid joined the household for only TWO months. Are new/modern maids so scheming and sex deprived? 
What's MOM - Ministry of Manpower doing to safeguard citizen's interest?
Why the agency who screened and gave maid the job placement wasn't in the light and be punished?
Why it became employer and family's misfortune/liability when such thing happened? Where's our rights and protection?  
Read more of my comments here and here.

Below is the kind of reply you get from MOM .... in response to ST forum letters regarding this evil and sex craving maid.  You want better protection, pay more for tests such as HIV, Hepatitis or upgrade FDW's medical insurance (increase coverage to limit risk exposure).... sounds fair?  MOM meant more and more maids are getting out of hand and they come to Spore unclean and with evil intentions?  Can't MOM put a stop to all these nonsense and rotten apples polluting our land?  All these bad maids, employers are fully responsible for them?  What are we, ATM machines?  

What's the role of agencies and Sporeans' MOM? MOM has been working hard to protect the interest of FDWs.... giving us unnecessary pain and unfair policies.  Is this how a caring govt/MOM works? Help source countries to push knives on its citizens? Ensure foreigners get the best out of our pockets? We are not earning as much as managers, ministers or business employers/proprietors.  Why make us go thru so much unfairness just because of the word "FDW's Employer"?

Measures to help in managing maids, ST Forum, 29 Sep 2015
In determining the types of health tests to be made mandatory for foreign domestic workers (FDWs) and the frequency with which the tests should be administered, there is a need to balance health concerns against the costs and inconvenience to employers.

To strike this balance, FDWs have to undergo basic pre-employment medical examinations before they start work in Singapore.  These include checks for conditions like heart and neurological disorders, infectious diseases, general mental health and physical fitness.  In addition, all FDWs have to undergo mandatory six-monthly medical checks for infectious conditions such as syphilis and tuberculosis, as well as a pregnancy test.

If employers wish to limit their risk exposure, they are encouraged to buy coverage for more than this minimum sum.  Employers may also send the FDW home to continue treatment in her home country once the FDW's condition has stabilised and she is deemed medically fit to travel.  FDWs convicted of violating Singapore's laws are debarred from working in Singapore.

In addition, the Ministry of Manpower maintains a channel for employers to provide feedback on their former FDWs.  Employment agencies are required to convey to prospective employers of the FDW any such feedback.  This is to enable the prospective employer to make an informed decision on whether to hire the FDW.  More information on managing FDWs is available at mom.gov.sg

Alvin Lim
Divisional Director
Workplace Policy and Strategy Division
Ministry of Manpower

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The existing policies made Singapore employers felt being punished for hiring FDWs. These are the unfair MOM policies:

1. Security Bond

For decades, employers are required to pay $5000 of security bond if FDW is pregnant (violation of work permit condition), runs away or committed offences eg stealing, moonlighting. This security bond liability has been modified. The new regulation is if FDW is pregnant, employer must pay her repatriation cost and absorb her loan if there's any outstanding. If FDW runs away, employer reported and tried to find her but she cannot be found, at least $2500 will end up in MOM's pocket.  

Fear, Worries, unfair Financial cost and Responsibilities ...These are the reasons why many employers are reluctant to give their FDWs weekly off days and chose off-day compensation when mandatory rest day was implemented in Jan 2013. By compensating, it doesn't mean the FDWs are agreeable. They may agree in order to get a job and settle nicely into your household, then starts pestering you for off days, claiming they deserve a good rest although they have been paid extra - about $16 to $20 per off day. It is like giving FDW extra salary and yet she is trying to get paid off days. 

When FDW disappears, then employers are going to lose money. Since the FDWs are human beings just like us, why do we need to be responsible for what happened to them on their off days or when housed in the maid agencies waiting to be transferred? Our SME, local or MNC employers do not need to lose any money, get implicated if the employee disappeared, gets AIDs, etc. So why FDWs are protected and treated better than the citizens?  $5000 is a large sum of money to lose for middle-income group. We are not charity organisation, merely salaried employee drawing a salary that is probably 2% of PM Lee's salary. It is a pathetic figure therefore most couples have to work so as to cope with Spore high standard of living.

Click to read more about modern FDWs: Content page - All topics

MOM: If the Foreign Domestic Worker (FDW) is missing, the employer is required to file a missing person police report and cancel the Work Permit within seven days of his/her knowledge that the worker is missing to cease the levy liability. If the missing FDW’s Work Permit has not expired at the time of cancellation, the employer will be given a grace period of one month from the cancellation date to locate the missing worker. The security deposit will be forfeited if the FDW is not repatriated within the one-month grace period.

If the FDW is found before the security bond is forfeited, the employer should arrange for the worker’s repatriation as soon as possible. A Special Pass will be issued by MOM to facilitate the worker's departure and may be applied through WP Online under 'Cancel Work Permit'.

2. Medical Care and Dental - welfare/well being

MOM: As an employer, you are responsible for your FDW’s medical needs. You are required to bear the full cost of her medical care should she require medical treatment, including hospitalization.
Medical care

As an employer, you are responsible for your FDW’s medical needs.  You need to bear the full cost of any medical care, including hospitalisation, and provide her with medical and personal accident insurance.

As a result of this rule, even if FDW has pre-existing medical condition (before she works for you) and when she fell ill due to the same condition (regardless she knew or doesn't), you are responsible for all her medical fees. Our govt will not help FDW's employer, activists such as HOME will not allow you to say NO. You are an evil person if you ask your maid to pay what she should be responsible for.  Have you ever wonder why maid agencies are earning more and more easy money yet no need not face any unfair policies such as security bond, medical (failed to screen maid), etc?

The orange CHAS card was useless, I had no chance to use it as a middle income earner. You have to get you feet stuck in the mud to feel the helplessness and disappointment. You or your loved ones have not incurred high hospitalisation or dental costs? How fortunate you are! You thought I am just complaining about trival matters, stingy and felt offering such benefits to the 'poor FDW' should be no big deal as a Singaporean employer? I envy your good life and naive thought! 

MOM indicated that employers fully sponsor FDWs' medical expenses, no cap was mentioned. Dental wasn't listed as part of medical expenses but if you have read the Philippines embassy contract, it stated employers are the ATM machines for the Filipinos. This lead to our miseries because other nationalities tend to follow the prideful Filipinos' way of good life in Spore. It is our hard earned money and we have to 'share with the maid' .... treat her like a family?  To pay so much for my own teeth already made me procrastinate for two years. In Spore, people like to say it is better to die because healthcare is not affordable.... wish I can die with my girl 安乐死 Euthanasia, 一了百了 不必惹人厌. If I kill myself, the law says it is a crime ...goodness, can't even take my own life!

Can I get my FDW to co-pay her medical expenses that exceed the insurance benefit limit?

MOM: No, you cannot arrange for your foreign domestic worker (FDW) to co-pay medical expenses that are over the insurance benefit limit. You also cannot arrange for her pay part of the co-insurance or deductible component of the medical insurance.

Winter: So the only alternative left is to send the FDW home before you admit her into any blood sucking hospital. If you're really so unlucky to have a FDW who was found unmovable/unconscious/extremely weak, MOM isn't going to sympathies your financial difficulties or take into consideration FDW's medical is not due to your negligence or evil-doing.  Maid agencies are free from any financial damage, isn't our MOM extremely nice to these 'money laundering business owners'?

If your FDW has not been taking care of her teeth (the day she was born) and when she complains of toothache, you are suppose to pay for her dental costs... according to activists. This is not stipulated in MOM's employment terms (be it for FDW or normal employee covered under Employment Act) but on appearance, FDWs and activists felt employers should be made fully responsible. Spore companies pay for employee's dental costs? No. Nicer companies allow $100 to $300 dental reimbursement each year. Have not heard of any Singapore company willing to bear the full dental cost of its local employee. Is your company that generous? Those working in govt/public sector, did you get full medical and dental reimbursement .... whatever you've incurred? If you, as an employee didn't get 100% medical and dental benefits from your Company, why maids deserve the best medical and dental benefits, 100% sponsored by their salaried employers.... merely earning 2% of PM Lee Hsien Loong's salary?  Why foreign domestic workers deserve VIP coverage from Employers' pocket? PAP, are you implying our needy citizens are trash, not important compared to foreigners? 

Do take note, I am trying to save money for my own tooth. According to National Dental Centre's x-ray report, my teeth are not in good condition. To fix one molar, the cheapest option is to extract and put denture. To do root canal and crowning, I must kiss good-bye to almost S$2000 cash .... just one molar tooth! Can't use Medisave or insurance benefit! If root canal or implant is affordable, cost around S$200 after subsidy, why should be I be a penurious person - be stingy on myself and family but extremely generous to FDW? Mid 2013, I chose to extract my molar because it was cheaper. 

Saved enough money ... well, finally gave up on govt, PAP isn't going to give better dental benefits and so I did bridging for that molar empty space (extracted) in Jun 2015.  Dental bridges literally bridge the gap created by one or more missing teeth.  Involved recontouring 2 teeth by removing a portion of enamel to allow room for a crown to be placed over them. Then a temporary bridge to wear to protect the exposed teeth and gums while the bridge is being made. It was so painful because of the opening up of my gums and a very rough, not so smooth temporary 'adhesive' used. The sharp edges of the adhesive that was used to hold my temporary crown made by gum seriously bruised.  The back of my gum was swollen, can't eat well or swallow my own saliva for one week plus. Had to use pain killer, some powder to numb my gums before I eat. If I don't do a dental bridge, the other molar on my right would be seriously overworked ... it was cracking!  Implant was way too expensive.

MOM didn't take into consideration that our money are hard earned and we don't earn as high as ministers. Just because we're labelled as an employer, MOM/PAP felt it is alright to let FDWs and source countries skin us. Anybody who bothers to be sympathetic to the less fortunate citizens, will know PAP's care and concern is meant for foreigners or the cream of crop. 

Welfare and Well being
MOM: As an employer, you are responsible for the provision of accommodation for your FDW.
Accommodation is acceptable only if it meets all the following requirements:
• Adequate shelter - Accommodation must adequately protect your FDW from environmental elements such as the sun, rain or strong winds.
• Provision of basic amenities - Your FDW must minimally be provided a mattress, a pillow, and a blanket.
• Sufficient ventilation - Accommodation must be sufficiently ventilated. Mechanical ventilation (e.g. electrical fan) should be provided if natural ventilation is inadequate. Your FDW should not sleep near any dangerous equipment or structure that could potentially cause harm or hurt to her.
Safety: your FDW should not sleep near any dangerous equipment or structure that could potentially cause harm or hurt to her.
• Ensuring modesty - Your FDW must not sleep in the same room as a male adult / teenager
• Ensuring space and privacy - Where possible, your FDW should be given a separate room of her own. If that is not possible, you should ensure that sufficient space and privacy are provided for your FDW.

Winter: FDWs, especially Filipino thought she should be given full privacy in the form of a single room.  Read: "Facebook maids" and "Maids in Spore"

MOM: You must provide your FDW with 3 meals a day. Your FDW requires sufficient food to perform household chores.  An example of a day’s food intake for a female engaged in moderate activity is as follows:

Breakfast: 4 slices of bread with spread.
Lunch: 1 bowl of rice + three-quarter cup of cooked vegetables + palm-sized amount of meat (fish/poultry/beef/lamb) + fruit
Dinner: 1 bowl of rice + three-quarter cup of cooked vegetables + palm-sized amount of meat (fish/poultry/beef/lamb) + fruit

Be sensitive to your FDW’s needs when it comes to food. Do not force your FDW to eat food that she is not supposed to or is not comfortable with. For example, your FDW may not be able to eat certain food due to her religious beliefs, or she may not be accustomed to your family’s dietary requirements (e.g. vegetarian food or porridge).

3. Repatriation
If your FDW comes to work for 3 days, refuses or unable to perform her job, act errant then asked to go home in tears (miss her family), you must pay for her air ticket back home and absorb her loan which could amount to $$4500 (loan, agent fee, insurance, etc). Expensive, not all employers able to part with this huge amount of money! Most employers chose to send FDWs back to agency without advance notice (fear she'll runaway), let the agency counsel them and be transferred to another victim-employer.

MOM: You should give your FDW reasonable notice of her repatriation to her home country and bear the full cost of her repatriation.

Winter:  If FDW is pregnant or committed offences eg stealing, moonlighting, ill-treating your child, etc... violated her work permit conditions; FDW has to be repatriated back to her country at employer's cost. Free ticket, sponsored holiday!  Read:  "Maid finding love" and "Pregnant maid"

I strongly advise modern employers to use repatriation as your weapon to kick out bad FDWs .... if there's no maid loan to blackmail you.  Let's try to make unfair policy turn into somebody else's advantage!  Every time a lousy FDW is kicked out, Spore will have one lesser headache.  Let them spread words at home that Spore has no gold for them to dig and maid agencies are blood suckers.  By allowing errant maids to remain in Spore (recycle/transfer), they pollute our country with nonsensical thoughts and greedy demands.  

Repatriating a maid without maid loan vs Maid Transfer.
Buying a one way budget airline air ticket cost about S$150 - 200.
Allowing maid to go back to a maid agency, wait for another ill-fated employer to employ her, the cost of her levy, lodging +indefinite wait to see her name off your obligation may cost more than $200.  Look at your FDW's contract, it states how much you need to pay agency as lodging and maid's F&B per day.

jojostc: I have a maid for 9 mths, and she also have finished her loan with the agent. can i just terminate her contract and send her back to her own country without keeping the maid agency in the loop?

POA: Why are you thinking of sending her back?
She has worked for 9 months but earned next to nothing.
Let her get a transfer. Unless she has done something drastic.

If you don't need her any more, or you're just not satisfied with her work, let her get a transfer.

jojostc: for my maid, she has reach a point that she refused to follow my mum's instructions when doing household chores.. always thinks that what she does is right..in the end, spoil a lot of things in the house. her attitude just getting from bad to worst. to the point she challenge my mum saying " you not happy then send me back to agent"
so i rather send her back home rather than send her back to agent.

POA: This is one thing I find so ridiculous. Maids that cannot make it with their first employers (and in some cases 2nd or 3 rd employers as well) are deemed to be worthy of higher salary as they are said to have "experience" 
why employers are willing to pay more for such maids?

Personally, I would rather take my chances with a brand new inexperienced maid then take one that has that kind of "experience" even if the pay is the same for both.

matrix0405:  Most likely she has been 'influenced' by other maids during her day offs - not happy, change employer (BTW, is she under the old 1-mth-1-dayoff scheme or new scheme?). She may be already in conversation with the agent, who could be telling her - not happy, change employer. It is not easy to find a maid but if her attitude doesn't improve, then she becomes a burden. Unless got free replacement within 1st year, it is better to sent her back home than to agent.

Can I repatriate my FDW to another destination?
MOM: Yes, you can repatriate your foreign domestic worker (FDW) to another destination that is not her home country if you both agree to this. You need to notify us of this arrangement when you cancel the Work Permit.

On the cancellation page, select the option declaring that you are repatriating your FDW to a destination other than their home country, and that both of you have reached a mutual agreement.

4. Transfer FDW (maid)
MOM: Employers who are applying for their fifth FDW within a 12-month period must attend the Classroom EOP. Employers who apply for their sixth or subsequent FDW within a 12-month period must attend an interview with an MOM officer before the Ministry processes the Work Permit application. The interview will allow the Ministry to gain an understanding of the employer's practices to assess the application.

Hong Kong Domestic Helpers (DH) are not allowed to remain in HK to find new employers if they have not completed 2-year contract. DHs have to pay their own costs to fly home, find new employer at home country and pay a new circle of agency fees. Spore FDWs can change as many employers as they want, as long as FDW willing to pay 1 to 2 months agency fee to get new employers. FDWs can even find an agency to fly them to Hong Kong or Taiwan directly from Spore. Some Spore agencies ganged up with their FDWs to encourage job hopping. Each successful transfer, agency get to reap easy proofits. Imagine one successful transfer, just agency fee would be S$900 to $2000 per FDW. The agency fee is non-refundable. Full-time working woman-employer can wait for one or two months for suitable replacement? Companies welcome employee to apply leave for their long disappearance? Who will cover our duties? Who is facing the losses, inconveniences and ended like an employee who can't perform well due to personal issues (unable to manage her personal life and not affecting work)?

To stop greedy, inexperience and poor attitude FDWs from flocking into Spore, FDW shouldn't be allowed to be transferred for more than two times per two year time frame. If a transfer is necessary to feed the maid agency or give maid another chance - a benefit of doubt for job mismatched, maybe each FDW can only be transferred once, within a time frame of 12 months.

MOM doesn't penalise maid agencies for not retaining their FDWs nor do proper job matching by having Accurate bio-data. Agencies claimed it is hard to check on the accuracy of bio-data provided by their source country partners. Employers suffered the most. MOM, agencies and FDWs benefited most. MOM continues to shake legs and collect monthly levy from employers promptly. They act very fast on FDW's complaints but not employers' concerns or when faced with a bad/runaway maid.

Some FDWs are truly just agencies' money-making tools but employers can't help them, pity them nor should be made responsible for their plight. Their home agencies cheated them, employers were merely unlucky to see their bio-data presented and selected them to work. Source country embassies and governments should be responsible for their own citizens. They should ensure the real job scope and working conditions are presented to FDWs who intend to fly out to work as domestic maids. What kind of salary will they be paid, loan and agency fee that each FDW is suppose to bear, etc. To protect their citizens from being cheated, each source country passport offices should stick the latest Spore employment terms. It would be best to show them a video of a Spore HDB flat, the chores and usual employer's requirement/expectations ... let them be mentally prepared.

Employer must pay for the maid's loan (on behalf, to be paid by FDW once she starts work) before she arrives in Singapore. How much does a one way air-ticket cost? FDW doesn't fly to Spore via SQ, she flew in via budget airlines. Agencies claimed each FDW were given 400 training hours in home country but FDW came and unable to do any housework in Spore.... lies!  All these administrative and training really amount to S$3400?? Since FDWs do not need to pay anything before they come to work in Singapore and they know that it is very easy to change employers, most FDWs are not motivated to work hard. FDWs are doing free labour for about 7 months to feed their agencies. They felt employers caused this, not agencies or themselves!! Some maids accused employers of cheating their salaries, asked why they are not paid for so many months, purposely made life difficult, vent anger on their innocent employers and played lazy/attitude tactics to punish their employers, as well as families. I wish FDWs could see the cost breakdown before each of them departs from home country to Spore. Make FDWs acknowledge and arrange bank loans in their own countries.

In Hong Kong and Taiwan, Domestic Helpers probably taken up loans from banks, friends or relatives so they had no choice but to work hard and could feel the money leaving their hands. DHs knew they are responsible for their own actions, behaved like working adults and get more off days - public holidays.

Read FDWs from:  "Philippines", "Indonesian", "Myanmar" and "Cambodia"
Fewer maids going abroad as Manila curbs bite - Philippines stopping its citizens from working as maid with maid loan

6. Monthly FDW Levy
MOM: The FDW levy serves to moderate the demand for FDWs and ensures that only employers who need and have the financial means to hire an FDW are able to do so. Singapore already has one of the highest number of FDWs per 1000 households in the world, higher than Hong Kong or Taiwan. While significantly higher wages would also moderate demand and increase our attractiveness to quality FDWs, it remains unclear that the market-determined wages of all FDWs will in fact adjust proportionately to reductions in the levy.

Is MOM trying to control the influx of FDWs? Will there be a removal of levy for its citizens? No, because that would mean lesser levies collected and will be a great loss to our govt. It was in the news by year 2030, there will be a 50% increase of FDWs in Spore to meet the needs, mainly required to provide care to the elderly. Daycare and eldercare will not be the first choice. Hiring FDW has became a necessity so that people can enjoy family time with their parents and children.

Employers in Singapore are required to pay the MOM a levy (click ) of $265 every month. If the employer has young children, special needs persons below 16 years old or elderly, the new levy from May 2015 is $60 each month. My understanding is that employers in Hong Kong or other countries are not required to pay maid levy.  Now the maid levy is lower so employers can reward a good maid by giving salary increment .... maybe yearly instead of 2 years, with contract renewal. 

Foreigners should kiss the MOM decision maker's ass for being super nice, gave unconditional 'love' and set rules to force employers to overlook/accept FDW's faults/flaws. Maids are treated like first class citizens, much better than the full-time working women who needed maids, helpers to help them while they stay employable. MOM/PAP doesn't seem to agree most of our salary is just 2% of PM Lee!  Read "Who earns lesser than FDW?"

If MOM/govt values us and treating us like humans, not agencies and FDWs' ATM machines, they shouldn't play a part to help FDWs and maid agencies eat our money. There are bad employers and certainly a lot of bad maids too. Nobody is perfect in this world but you and media shouldn't magnify what employers did. We can try to be good but you shouldn't blanket cover most FDW's employers are unkind and evil. How come it is one-sided, employers get punished, name tarnished but maids and agents have nothing to lose nor responsibilities bear? Read: All topics

A FDW levy is to be paid by employers at the end of each month. Levy charges begin one day after she arrives in Singapore. For a first-time FDW, the levy will begin on the fourth day of her arrival (excluding the day of arrival).

Levy payments should be made via General Interbank Recurring Order (GIRO). The worker’s Work Permit will be cancelled if you fail to maintain a valid GIRO account. If payment is not made on time, one or more of the following measures may be taken:
a. A late payment penalty will be charged.
b. Existing Work Permits will be cancelled.
The employer will not be allowed to apply for new Work Permits or renew his existing Work Permits.
Legal proceedings will be taken to recover the unpaid levy liability.
FDW employers may qualify for the concessionary levy rate of $120 per month under any of the schemes below:
- Young child/grandchild scheme
- Aged person scheme
- persons with disabilities scheme

Read: MOM website - rate and login to see your monthly payment

7. Window cleaning - Safety
MOM: It is your responsibility to ensure that the FDW performs her work in a safe manner. Her work practices must be in accordance with the approved work practices stipulated in MOM’s training courses (e.g. the Employers' Orientation Programme and relevant safety and training materials.

Most FDWs' employer have to work. Who is so free to supervise the maid and ensure she doesn't fall when cleaning the window or doing laundry? If maid did something that endangered her life, employer or any adult at home during the time of accident are likely to be fined or jailed. Maids are working adult, suppose to attend SIP training (learn about safety) but if she failed to take good care of herself, her employer .... the legal guardian gets the blame. Maid agents and MOM are spared. HDB designed and built those dangerous flats, why they are not held responsible when citizen fell while doing bamboo laundry or cleaning windows?

4 June 2012,
MOM sent safety circular to all FDW employers:

1.The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has been deeply concerned about the recent spate of Foreign Domestic Worker (FDW) work-related fatalities. Since January 2012, there have been nine work-related FDW fall from heights fatalities, compared to four cases for the whole of 2011 and eight in 2010. Our investigations show that five of the nine fatalities were related to FDWs cleaning windows in an unsafe manner. Two arose from hanging laundry, while the causes of the last two are pending further investigation.

This tragic and unnecessary loss of lives could have been prevented if FDWs and FDW employers took safe work practices seriously. With immediate effect, employers of FDWs shall not allow their FDWs to clean the exterior of windows unless strict safety conditions are in place. MOM also urges anyone who cleans exterior windows to apply these same strict safety conditions.

Read more here
Comments extracted from Yahoo:
* So now we can't clean our windows because a few foreign maids had wasted their lives in the process of doing it. We have been cleaning our windows all along and found ways and methods to mitigate the danger it involves. Please don't continue to approach everything with such short sighted solutions. Find the root cause and deal with it. This country is being run by too many short sighted solutions already.

* Please ban window cleaning, and HDB should step up to do outside cleaning more often. Take people's money like mafia and sell costly overpriced flats and yet cannot clean windows 3 times a year for the residents? Stupid HDB! Innocent maids' lives are more precious and meaningful to me than you greedy thieving PAP ministers!

* hire maids for what? they might as well not handle hot oil too. because floor slippery can fall and oil splash on them. should not climb chair to clean house too. can fall. a bit ridiculous. just improvise with longer stick and sponge, can clean windows already. no need to climb on stool. not just maids fall from window. many have fallen hanging clothes too. so bamboo poles are next to ban!! the list goes on. better to have a dirty house to be safe.

* What happen if the maid open the window wide not to clean window but want to talk to another maid in the opposite building - but topple over? Should we clamour for Gov to ban maid from opening the window and ban maid to talk across building?

* What happen if the maid use a knife and cut herself? Ah I got a better idea, maid should use karate chop to cut meat, to break bones, use head to head butt coconut, use buttock to crack the water melon - so that maid will not be injured by knife.
Ah, I got a even better idea, since gravity is the culprit that cause maid to fall, ban the gravity, put gravity into jail - so that there will be no more gravity in Singapore and maids will not fall from flat.... What happen maid go off on off-day and got into accidents - ban maid from off day. maid having off-day to go out got accident, got boyfriend, get pregnant then who bear the responsibility? Employer?

* I had a maid before. Despite repeated warning, she still climb to clean the windows, even I have locked the metal grilles, somehow she has her way to locate those keys. Really scare the SHlT out of me few times. In the end I have no choice but to send her back. Sometimes, it is not the employers fault, the maids just do not have any sense of danger. Maybe the training should include showing them a few pictures of those fallen victims will help them to understand the consequences.

* Our ministers are always quick to ban this and that... other measures come by making us pay to resolve problems... COE, ERP. I think this has become their modus operandis. I have maids for the last 10 years but have never requested them to clean windows on the outside. Irresponsible are those who did. Sometimes the maid may have taken the initiative to do it but have unfortunately ignored the safety issue. So now to resolve the problem, maids are banned from cleaning windows. That was a clever solution from a bunch highly educated and well-paid ministers. So, my next question is - When maids start getting themselves cut by knifes while preparing meals or getting scalded when boiling water, cutting by knifes and boiling/cooking will be banned?

* Ban is the simple way out . Then may I ask before having maids, how we managed to survive the window cleaning tasks for generations. It boil down to how to carry out the task safely. We should help the maid to understand the Danger and how to take care of oneself. Look , now the Indonesian authority is saying that BAN maids from doing window cleaning and hanging out of clothing for high rise flats then who clean the windows and hangout the clothings....Ah Ma … the employers? Maybe.........? We Singaporeans are not Stupid so pls stop saying Ban this and that, let us go to the root of the problems and set it Right.

* So do you expect the old folks (or your aged parents to hang the clothes) since you hire the maid to take care of such manual jobs? Are the maids who falls to death too short in height to do such laundry? If yes, perhaps we need to hire maids of certain height, so that they would not tiptoe to hang laundry.

MOM: Contracts and safety agreement for foreign domestic worker
You are encouraged to sign an employment contract with your foreign domestic worker (FDW) and are required to sign a safety agreement with her.  FDWs are not covered by the Employment Act because it is not practical to regulate specific aspects of domestic work, such as hours of work and work on public holidays.

Safety agreement
When you hire a first-time or transfer FDW, your employment agency needs to arrange for you and her to sign a safety agreement.  The aim of the agreement is to ensure that both of you understand MOM’s restrictions for cleaning the exterior of windows.

You do not need to sign a safety agreement if you are renewing your existing FDW's contract.

The safety agreement lists the restrictions on cleaning the exterior of windows.  States that your requirements for cleaning windows will comply with our regulations.  Includes the FDW’s acknowledgment of your requirement on window cleaning.

To ensure that your FDW fully understands the agreement, the copy she signs will be in her native language.  The agreement will be signed by three parties: you, the employment agency and the FDW. You should each keep a copy of the agreement.

8. FDW agent and placement fee

The term ‘placement fee’ initially includes the cost of medical check-up, document processing and charges by source country training centre, unlike currently, Placement Fee includes fees by imposed by overseas recruitment agencies and middlemen. On top of placement fee, Spore agency will charge employer a one-time agency fee of $800 to $2000 depending on agency and nationality of maid. It appears that this non-refundable agency fee doesn't include maid's insurance, SIP, work permit, MOM medical check up, etc.

Sg maid agencies expect all employers to bear the placement fee for maid in advance, therefore, fresh maid repays employer the $3400 placement fee in instalments, means she typically works but gets nothing for the first 7 - 8 months.  FDW can opt to be paid no-off day compensation at about $20 per week. 

It is extremely unfair to make employers absorb the cost of FDW's placement fees ie maid loan. Also, the maid agency fee should be capped at FDW's one month salary (applies to both employer and FDW) but MOM gave EA (maid agency) the free-hand to do anything they like. Nothing has been done to stop maid agencies from taking easy money from the employers. 

If maid wants a job in Spore, she should be fully responsible for her loan, otherwise, don't come!  There's no such thing as Free Lunch! By making Employers foot their placement fee (eg Philippines as a source country), it is encouraging maids to job hop, show no job commitment, come to Spore as princesses and give us more problems, can anytime say bye-bye because there's nothing .... no loan to tie them down. If maids want to save money, eliminate middlemen and maid agencies, as well as getting source govt to be involved .... they just want to load their pockets with money from the easiest targets --> Spore employers because we don't have a caring govt.  MOM is extremely pro-maid and pro-agency, hasn't failed to support source countries' demand (requirement).   MOM endorses whatever EAs did or source country demanded.  If Philippines is determined to squeeze more money from FDW's Employers and make us look like idiots or ATM machines, I hope Filipino FDWs can vacate Spore, stopping trying to get employers to foot your loan.  Employers don't want prideful FDWs, expensive, stubborn and untrainable to remain here as live-in FDWs. 

Philippine govt wants employers to bear domestic workers' placement fees, Straits Times, 19 Jun 2013
- Indonesia maid placement fee structure, Oct 2012
Fewer maids from Manila, Straits Times/AsiaOne, 17 Aug 2015

If Phil govt thought Sporeans have pockets full of cash to employ your citizens, I am sure you'll discover we are not rich, most salaried Employers employed maids due to necessity.  Since it is a necessity, we wouldn't want to pay more and take in more risks.  Wake up, Spore doesn't have gold mines for you to dig!  You dare to employ fresh Filipinos? We looked like paid higher by the companies that employed us but have you forgotten to factor in the living in costs and Sg high cost of living, including our children's?

When you get a FDW who learns to adapt and 'tolerate' life as a maid, it means this woman needs a job. Her willingness to compromise, co-operate and be a good helper is what I'm looking for. Nowadays, I think it is hard to get a submissive and trainable maid whom you can order around.

In case you're still in slumberland, there's no way you can force a maid to stay and work 2 good years with you.  MOM (via SIP course) has trained FDWs how to runaway from their contractual duties. Maids leverage on several ways to break their contracts and get a transfer. She can refuse to work (boycott), laze around or adopt a poor working attitude and deliberately break/destroy your things. A recalcitrant maid can also feigns unstable behaviour or simply hop into a cab and seek sanctuary at her embassy, HOME or agency.

9. FDW mandatory off day
MOM: A well-rested FDW is more productive. You should ensure that she has sufficient rest, especially during the night. Rest days should also be catered for, as agreed between yourself and the worker.   

MOM: Domestic workers, both foreign and local, are not covered by the Employment Act.
It is not practical to regulate specific aspects of domestic work, i.e. hours of work, work on a rest day and on public holidays. 

To give employers and FDWs greater flexibility, employers may compensate their FDWs if there is mutual written agreement between both parties for the FDWs to work on their rest days. The compensation should be at least one day’s salary or a replacement rest day taken within the same calendar month.

The Ministry of Manpower understands that the weekly rest day is a new requirement and there may be questions on how employers can implement it. Therefore, MOM has produced a special rest day edition of the employer newsletter pdfInFOCUS, and also a special guide entitled pdfFDW Weekly Rest Day: A Guide for Employers

With such a policy, MOM has added additional stress and liabilities to Employers since Jan 2013.  MOM, FDWs and maid agencies have nothing to lose nor any responsibility to bear so they can continue to sit comfortably to count money collected.   

It doesn't mean I don't agree FDWs should take off days to mix with her girlfriends, get good influence, attend courses or get good tips on how to cope with loneliness and work well with an employer from different culture/background. It is the problems that maid would cause and bring back after her weekly rest day.

MOM has not come up with any policy to safeguard our interest and stop us for being bullied by bad/errant/scheming maids, maid agency or source country.   Is this how a caring govt should be?  Elected and appointed ministers to act for the interest of foreigners? 

Many employers are kind but do maids reciprocate the kindness?  Many nice employers were bitten by their FDWs, who were ungrateful, liars and/or unappreciative, did MOM care?  Maids are likely to take their weekly off day to compare and try more ways to make employers suffer.  How many maids will attend courses?  How many will do pot-luck and have a gathering just to de-stress healthily and sensibly?  Modern maids can be quite selfish, irresponsible, inconsiderate and self-centred.  

By law, MOM made employers be fully responsible for the actions of their FDWs eg pregnant, terminating contract with lies, etc.  It is ridiculous to make employers babysit or monitor their FDWs.  Let the sex deprived FDWs enjoy their off days but don't make Employers be responsible for any half yearly medical or security bond.  Want to sleep with men, ensure FDWs do quarterly blood test at their own costs.  Employers are not required to know what their maids (she's just an employee not our daughter or next-of-kin) did on off days.   Make FDWs behave like sensible human beings - force them to grow up, become responsible working adults.  MOM shouldn't continue make Employers as scapegoats or ATM machines?

With this mandatory off day, FDW's employers have been forced to work harder, be supermen and superwomen. The reason being, the kids are theirs, the house belongs to them, Employers enjoy family time (immediate family are living with them) so why they can't they spare time to take charge for just 'one day' a week and free the maid?  Maids are not slaves or robots but employers are because we're denied a good rest!  Sympathy is given to the so-call 'underpaid live-in maid'.  Just because their families are faraway, we have to suffer in silence and pamper them, give them good salary and life in Spore.... something their own countries cannot match nor offer!

10. Live in FDW
I am not keen to have a FDW living in my house, bear her live-in costs (eg insurance, food and lodging) and nonsense! Really don't understand why MOM insists employers must pay for a live-in maid. Why maids cannot receive a monthly salary like local cleaners and bear their meals, transport, accommodation, etc? Why can't we house FDWs in nearby boarding house? Maid can go off, leave my house once I get home (after work). Don't tell me what she did outside, don't ask me to monitor and leave me alone! Don't make me be responsible for a stranger-human being. Just give me a FDW who can ensure the daily chores assigned are well done, my girl well protected and taken good care of. Let FDW has plenty off time for herself at her own costs and risks.  Let FDW stay in cheap boarding house, share room with her own kind and enjoy freedom.
MOM can implement a security system to track FDW's clock in/out time from her boarding house and employer's house.  If FDWs didn't get 8 hours sleep everyday, they should be held responsible for failing to carry out their main domestic duties at employers' house. She has to bear the consequences as an working adult! FDW is not a child! Employers are not FDWs' guardian and shouldn't be held responsible for maids' problems/misbehave.

Most people need a FDW not solely for childcare or cleaning, it could be dual functions.  It doesn't make sense for them to hire a local babysitter and a part-time cleaner although the costs is lesser than a live-in FDW.  A live-in, inexperience FDW cost S$1500 to $1700, is this cheaper than to hire a local babysitter (S$700 to $800) and a part-time cleaner (about S$16 per day per 4 hrs of work x 4 weeks)? It is a necessity and the flexibility, that is working hours to fit employers so to some people, a maid is hired... an ideal option.

Most employers are not trying to be nasty, unkind, stingy or inhumane. We're just trying to protect ourselves. Nobody in Singapore will protect employers, except ourselves! We are forced to learn to protect ourselves and not to over indulge a maid. Before maid start to demand this and that, she should ask herself what sort of quality work she provided?  How's her working attitude?  Does she really deserve the perks .... as a reward not entitlement?  Most employee would want a reward for good performance, eg You or Me. A good appraisal, reward or salary increment shows our work in the company is recognised or appreciated by our superiors. 

11. FDW's insurance
MOM website
Medical insurance

For medical insurance policies taken up or renewed on/or after 1 January 2010, the insurance coverage must be at least $15,000 per year for each FDW’s inpatient care and day surgery during her stay in Singapore. This is in line with the employers' existing responsibility for the upkeep and well-being of their FDWs, including the provision of medical treatment.

Personal accident insurance

It is compulsory for employers to take up a Personal Accident Insurance policy for their FDWs before they can employ the FDW. The minimum sum assured should be $40,000. Any compensation payable should be made to her or her beneficiaries.

Why insurance is not part of FDW's own cost which include repatriation, a one-way ticket for pregnant FDW or those maids who has violated MOM's work permit conditions? FDW should pay for her own insurance so that each time the maid is transferred to another employer, it will be tagged to her name and not employer's, thus, new employer is not required to buy new policy. Nowadays, it is so hard to find a maid who comes with the right mindset and will provide reasonable service for 2 years. Maybe employer pays for fresh maid's insurance but the policy showed only maid's name, thus, employer is no longer being held responsible? Also, make sure hospitals know the basic FDw insurance policy and do not purposely order the most expensive procedures and medicine.

This is provided that your Foreign Maid Insurance policy is taken up for a term of 26 months and is cancelled within 180 days. The day your maid's work permit is terminated is the day your refund is calculated, not the day you sent her back to her agency. If your maid wants a transfer after working 6 months with you, you will get back nothing. 

If the policy is cancelled (NTUC Income):

• Within 3 months from the commencement of the Period of Insurance, the refund shall be 70% subject to no claim made under the Policy;
• Within 6 months from the commencement of the Period of Insurance, the refund shall be 30% subject to no claim made under the Policy;
• Within 12 months from the commencement of the Period of Insurance, the refund shall be 15% subject to no claim made under the Policy;

After 12 months from the commencement of the Period of Insurance, there will be no refund or endorsement to be issued.

Means if you've purchased a 2-year FDW insurance and FDW wants to terminate her contract after working for 5 months (based on policy date), you'll get $$policy$$ x 30%.  If FDW leaves you after working for 12 months and 1 day or longer, you'll get zero refund value.  FDW insurance premium is non-transferable to the new employer.  Previously, the NTUC Income policy refund value was from 181 days (6 months) onwards = zero.  Within 91 to 180 days = 40% of policy premium. 

Some insurance companies offered cheaper 2-year premium, eg the refund policy for MSIG is "If you cancel the Policy, you will receive a refund of premium based on the Company's short period rates for the unexpired period of insurance, subject to a minimum charge of $50.  There will be no refund if the Policy is cancelled after 180 days from the commencement date of the insurance".  Compare the policy coverage if you are a DIY employer.  If you are getting a FDW through an agency, you cannot choose which insurance company.

12. FDW starting pay
An inexperience maid shouldn’t be paid a salary that is higher or similar to those domestic helpers working Hong Kong. It is sending wrong message to maids that no experience, bad or unable to perform, Singapore welcomes them to mince us due to demand for maid by people who don’t really need a maid. Some hired FDWs thinking they are very cheap, something like an entitlement. Spore FDWs should be paid lower because they are not trained to carry out proper housework or pay FDW high salary does not equate to better performance and get appreciation from FDW.

Employers who have learnt the hard way will know what I meant. Those who had been very kind, accommodating and caring to their FDWs but were played out by them, how would you feel if you're the one breaking your bank and getting the headaches? FDWs nowadays get much higher salary, better welfare and more people to pity them but they are still not pleased. Look their Facebook comments and their expectation on job websites, some asked for live-out, knowing it is illegal for Spore FDWs. Why are maids so arrogant and demanding? Because expatriates (the westerners) spolit the market or activists brain-washed and fed FDWs with wrong info!

Is it correct to disregard the existing law in the host country? Showing no respect to the governing country is what a sensible human being should behave? Every country has its own terms and conditions yet FDWs are trying to bend them in order to suit them. Do you, as a full-time employee, tell your company or supervisor that you want this and that so that you'll feel happy with your job? Is this how you feel being treated like human, able to voice, bargain and inflict 'injury' on your employers? It is correct to ask your company tweak its policies to fit your needs? If you didn't ask your company to accommodate your unreasonable demands, what make maids so special, must be treated well and let them live far better than their employer? If FDWs cannot take 'hardship', stay in source country. Don't whine in Spore!

Overall maid's quality is horrible and working attitude sucks. I believe it's better to pay an inexperienced FDW a reasonable monthly salary of S$400 per month.  MOM should send the right message that hardworking FDWs will be duly rewarded. Princess-attitude FDWs shouldn't be encouraged to fly over and work as domestic maids.

Read:  "Cost to Employ a FDW"; "What maids did"; What Maids did?  Part 5Spore maids and my current FDW

13. FDW's half yearly medical 
If MOM remains so interested to find out whether the FDW is pregnant or contracted HIV, shouldn't MOM do the policing and get FDWs to report to your appointed clinics during their off days? It is unfair to make Employers continue pay for FDW's half yearly medical check-up to satisfy MOM's requirement.  It is also unfair that Employers need to face the implications of security bond and work permit terms when maid is tested pregnant.  The costs and consequences should be paid by FDW, not us! We didn't order the maids to sleep around so why should employers pay for FDWs' sexual desires?  If FDW gets pregnant, infected with AIDS or other diseases, maid should compensate her employer and ensure her loan (whatever she owes employer +interest) are paid by her family, am I right?

Early Aug 2015, I paid $29.96 for JA's half yearly medical.  Different GP charges differently so do ask before you register at the counter.  Show the clinic nurse the MOM notification letter so that she can advise you the actual cost after GST.  That clinic kept increasing price. I remembered last year it was about $25.  I intended to visit another clinic which is $5 cheaper but the waiting time was very long.  Next time, I will just pay the fee, go home and then let my FDW wait for her turn.  JA can meddle with her mobile phone ... kill time for that 2 hrs long wait.

Transfer an FDW to a new employer
To transfer a foreign domestic worker, both the current employer and the new employer need to complete certain steps.

If you are the new employer of the transfer FDW, you need to complete these tasks 30 days before her Work Permit expires:
1) Get written consent from the current employer by completing Part 5 of the Work Permit Application Form.
2) (If required) Ensure that the current employer has sent the FDW for her 6-monthly medical examination. Her next medical examination is due if the last one was done 5 months ago.
3) Apply for a new Work Permit for the FDW.  The FDW can start working for you only after the new Work Permit is issued.

If you are the current employer, you need to:
1) Collect the FDW's current Work Permit card before starting the transfer to the new employer.
2) Continue to pay the levy up to the day before the new Work Permit is issued.
3) (If required) Send the FDW for her 6-monthly medical examination, if required. Her next medical examination is due if the last one was done more than 5 months ago.
If the transfer is unsuccessful and the Work Permit is cancelled or expires, you must send the FDW home within 1 week after the Work Permit ends.

If the FDW's transfer is approved, both the new and the current employers will get an in-principle approval letter stating the transfer date. The transfer date is usually 1 week after the approval date.

As the new employer, you can request to change the transfer date if both you and the current employer agree to it. You can log in to WP Online to change the transfer date and extend the in-principle approval.

Winter: If you don't want to be a DIY employer, pay an agency to do all the necessary FDW transfer.

How do I check my FDW’s medical examination date?

MOM: You can log in to WP Online to check your foreign domestic worker (FDW)'s last 6-monthly medical examination (6ME) date, or if your worker is due for 6ME. Under Print Letters / Forms / Receipts, click 6-Monthly Medical Examination Notice.

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11 Aug 2015
From $265 to previously $170 and now $60 as maid levy per month .... cheap so are you encouraged or tempted to employ a FDW?

From May 2015, levy concession for a foreign domestic worker is $60 per month.  You can get levy concession if you hire a foreign domestic worker (FDW) to care for a child, elderly person, or person with disability living at the same registered address as you.

As an employer of an FDW, you may be eligible for the concessionary levy rate of $60 per month if you are under any of these schemes:
  • Young child or grandchild scheme
  • Aged person scheme
  • Persons with disabilities scheme
Enhanced the qualifying criteria to include employers with Singaporean children or grandchildren below the age of 16 (instead of 12)

For details, check out the Factsheet and FAQs on Enhanced FDW Levy Concession.
The levy concession for 1 FDW is granted based on 1 eligible person in the household.
You can apply for the concession for up to 2 FDWs (for 2 eligible persons in the household).  The concessionary rate will take effect from the 1st of the following month after the application is approved.

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Oct 2013
Winter: I hope MOM can issue a new law, that is Employers holding work permits (especially expatriates) cannot hire FDWs.... work permit holders deliberately spoil Spore domestic workers' market by offering unrealistic salary. If expat or work permit holders want to hire a maid, then the most suitable method is that they pay COE - Certificate of Employment, at a cost of $500 to 1000 per month, depending on their countries living standard of housemaids. Most of the western expat wives come to Spore with husbands earning high income, able to enjoy life as expat tai-tai, most live in landed property, no need to slog and fight for a job in Spore so why should Spore/Singaporeans subsidize their FDWs' employment?

Western Expats/Caucasians like to compare the employment terms of maids in western countries without realising the monthly salary of low to middle-income Singaporeans and our living standards vs maids' home countries. Expats as well as activists are uninterested to get the facts right - a low income earner (eg cleaner, security officer) could be drawing only S$800 per month, excluding living costs. All Spore FDWs had their living expenses, including accommodation and insurance paid by their employers. Thus, each could receive monthly salary, known as take home pay (savings) of at least S$450 per month.  All living expenses paid by their employers so to employ a live-in maid, it cost at least S$1500 per month per maid.  This figure is peanuts to expats and activists.

Read:  Cost to employ a FDW

$450-600 is certainly not low compared to our low wage earners who probably get a 2 digit savings or zero. Sounds bad but do you care? Have you fought hard for the Sporean-low wage earners and needy families? Obviously NO because your interest is to portray FDWs are pathetic 'slaves' in a country whereby no slave should exist. FDWs get good terms and salary yet kept complaining not enough. Ironic!

Read: Who earn lesser than FDWs?

Expats and activists advocate human rights, misled maids to fight for lesser work but in return, get higher pay and benefits.... causing lots of headaches and financial losses to local employers.  Read:  "Activists" and "Expat's point of view"

If MOM can't bear to part with a rosy income in the form of FDW levy, thus, kept encouraging these cash rich people to employ 'cheap maids' (in their point of view), FDW-employers who are holding work permits and Permanent Residents whose combined household income are above S$8000, should pay S$500 to $1000/month as FDW levy. If they or any citizen who employ more than 2 maids in the same address, they must pay double for their second maid. Employing two maids do not mean one outgoing maid (returning home or seeking a transfer) and needed a new replacement. It meant those who wanted 2 maids to work in the same address. The reason for these employers to get 2 maids is mainly due to FDWs too affordable and they have the $power to be one of the desirable employers.  

Those Employers who are unable to generate enough housework for their FDWs, gave lots of free time during working days are the ones who played a part to our miseries. They are the ones who don't really need a full-time maid, they can turn to other options but chose to employ maids and indirectly caused a surge in maid's demand and high salary. Due to their financial status 银弹攻击, they played the roles of angels and offered juicy perks. To them, it is no big deal to have extra mouth(s) in the house spending half of the time to do her/their personal things eg chit-chat, surf the net or watch TV. This gave wrong impression to some maids and thus, assumed such princess life is the norm or what they are entitled to these in Spore and employers who made them work too hard, eg 8 hours a day are labelled as slave drivers. 


  1. Employers always at losing end. Maids get what they want and maid agents laughing all the way to the bank.

    Where are the laws and regulations to protect and help employers? Want more babies and more women in workforce? Haha...won't succeed with things the way they are. So sad.

  2. it actually costs $100 + more per month to employ a FDW after new day off ruling in 2013. Why is it that MOM does not reduce our levy by $70, since we now have to pay FDW compensation in lieu of day off?

  3. From what I know (spoke to a lawyer friend on this), run away is confirm employer lugi. Minimum half of secuity bond forfeited and more issues arise when being accused as molester.

    If maid said molested, end up all fake, employer still has to be accused of molesting, face the music and than pay for all legal fees. Maid represented by the embassy and can go back without paying anything, everything free, no need to pay air ticket to be fired home, good deal to be bad maid in Sin.
    So you sure you want to employ a maid thinking they can be very good people?

  4. The moron chose to come here and work as a maid, jolly well knows there was no off day given for work permit issued before 1/1/2013, so why complaining? No one had forced her into the job. You are not sold to Spore as slave, b-o-d-o-h!

    Not Happy, Quit, You die or no money your business!
    So spolit to fingerpointing at employers who are already at the mercy of you, your agency and country!

  5. There are employers who abuse their maids; there are employers who are abused by their maids. There are two sides to a coin.

    Educated people and those who think they are so righteous and holy fighting for the foreign domestic workers, you don't use your brains do you? You only see one side of the story. People like you are dangerous and do nothing good to the society.

    Maids steal, lie, lazy, bring back sex partners home when the employers are not home. Maids need to realise that they are here providing a FDW service... they are here to work... if they want to lead a good social life, then go home and be starved. Perhaps you can earn from all the sex deals back home and at the same time have your families living close to you. Win-win, no excuse to say miss your family and cannot part with mobile. Don’t come here say need money but in actual fact, not short of cash. You come here looking for a free holiday and an employer who doesn't give much work.... can be trained to do your duties as well as her own full time job. Singaporeans looked like idiots?!!

  6. Wonder why the government not doing anything to protect employers. My maid just told me she wants to quit coz she doesn't like my mom who is stricter with maid in terms of taking care of my kids.

    With all the problems the maid has been giving me, I think I will quit my high pay job n stay at home. It is frustating to change maid, a waste of money and time. Not something that I like.

    Sometimes I just wonder, even when the ah ma or ah gong cleaner doesn't do their job well, they got sack n got nothing back n no protection, n live in fear of not getting enough food, why r these maids protected when they couldn't perform their job well? n employers have to pay for them while waiting to send them back or transfer them? Why employers should pay for their flight ticket when they didn't fulfill their contracts or violated work permit conditions?

  7. Look, our lifes are cheaper than that of the maids. We hang clothes outside our flats, we clean windows. When we fall, we are deemed to have been careless and end of the story. When maids fell, employers must pay fines, medical costs related to maid and maybe end up in JAIL! Employers will be banned for employing maids too. Not only that, employer's name and picture will be in the news! Safety should be part of a maid's training. It is common sense that it is a life lost if maid fell but how come maids dont see this point? If cleaning windows or hang clothes outside the flats must be done under employer's supervision, then why architects of HDB designed the windows and laundry area as something so dangerous?? Isn't it absurb to make employers be fully responsible for their maids?

  8. Agreed, SAFETY training should be part of the training course that the agent provided before sending them in. We all live in HDB and that's HDB design to hang clothes out. Employer can't be 24-hours supervise the maid in her works right? Everything is employer fault!! where is the justice!! Nobody would like to employ a maid unless really no choice and need someone to look after the elderly at home. Don't understand what is our MOM doing..sigh..

  9. There is a lot of hate in this thread towards 'foreigners', whether they be FDW's or 'expats'. I am a foreigner. I have lived in Singapore for 8 years. I do not have an expat package and am not a tai-tai. I work for a living like most people, I balance child care and working and the home. I own a business that employs 30 Singaporeans. I also have an FDW to help me balance children, home & work. Why am I not as worthy as you of an FDW? I quote from your post:-

    "Best is those employers holding work permits (especially expatriates) cannot hire FDWs.... work permit holders spolit the domestic workers' market by offering unrealistic salary. Their wives come to Spore with husbands earning high income, able to enjoy life as expat tai-tai, live in landed property (mostly paid by their companies), no need to slog and fight for a job in Spore'.

    If I have no FDW I cannot work, if I cannot work I cannot support business, if I cannot support business I cannot contribute to Singapore economy. Which is exactly what I am doing, I am contributing to the Singapore Economy directly because I own a local firm, employ local people and live locally. Yet you want to exclude me from having FDW?

    Foreigners (expats as well as other foreign workers) are often treated as 2nd class citizens here, we are often called Ang moh to our faces, we are often quoted different prices for things (higher than for Singaporeans) because it is assumed that we are rich and don't speak mandarin. We are not welcomed to community events. Perhaps look in your own backyard before accusing others of making it impossible.

    1. Expats, you are jewels in maids' eyes.
      I don't know why you're in spore without a husband earning high expat pay package and had to work hard to support your business. yes, you've contributed to the economy and gave some people jobs but your presence created maids green with envy and forced locals agree to pay that angmos willing to offer .... salary and benefits in the form of peanuts.

      When maids see you .... their eyes sparkle, acted like bees circling honey
      When shop attendents see you .... their eyes sparkle too.
      Most expats acted like the money casted in spore are peanuts. We work hard to have a salary but most expats don't, maybe you're that unusual one. Maids salary are so low in many people's eyes, I am surprised by increasing the maid levy, you, as an expat, a boss whom I'm sure your salary is very much higher than us would feel the pinch.

      I am very supportive of eliminating people who found maids are too affordable in spore. Those employers who made us suffer by jerking up maid salary, benefits and placement fee should be controlled.
      I like having expat colleagues and friends but if that expat is a maid employer who offered a pay package due to compassion, I will stay away. Their presence made me looked like a fool. the way they handled maids made me uncomfortable.

    2. How come an expat who is running own business is facing problem on higher levy? If the levy is higher, I believe you can afford to pay more than any of us. If you're banned from employing, approach a cleaning company and send your children to childcare centre. I dont know whether you need a maid because she is cheap or some other reasons.

      Maids are now costing close $1.5K/mth (salary, live-in cost + levy + placement fee + others). Who caused this? Those people who are rich, expats and employers who failed to think of the needy Sporeans. I think Winter just want employers to be of similiar standards and not offering extremes. If anybody tries to beat the local terms, something has to be done so that those families who needed maids but not receiving high income can have a choice to employ a good worker.

      The main reason for most women to work is to have dual income so that they can survive in Sin. We are born here, Spore is our home. We spend our money and time here, there's no way we can run to another country like the foreigners. Most of us live in HDB flats, small area and certainly unable to offer terms like expats. Do you live in HDB flats? May I ask how much do you pay your employee? Are their salary comparable to yours?

      We risk our family and lifestyle to hire low quality maids asking higher salary, higher placement fee plus have to accept their ridiculous working attitude and tolerate their unreasonable demands. All these unreasonable demands were caused by people who don't really need a maid. Of cos, expats who offered wonderful offer is another reason for our plight.

      I'm not only agreeing with Winter's suggestion, I like to add that MOM should reward maid who has completed 2 year contract with the same employer. The levy MOM collected ought to be halved and be given to a good maid. This will encourage maid to stay with one employer and do her job as per agreement. Maids who worked hard must be rewarded. MOM should not eat maid's money in the form of levy.

  10. What have foreigners done to make us embrace?
    Foreigners came to Sg to work as maids, professionals, nurses, service personnels, run a business like above expat, tagged along with husband to enjoy a tai-tai life, etc.
    No matter in what form, did foreigners in Sg made the citizen's life better? Did you or those self righteous people refrain from upholding human rights and stop making us suffer in the MAIDS' hands? Things that maids craved for, they used human rights to achieve. What about us, where's employers' human rights? Why we end up employing liars yet believers of human rights supported these cheaters fully?

    Expats came to Sg like Survivors offering unrealistic job offer to maids, educated FDWs to behave like angmos, should we be happy that you're spoiling the domestic market and sending wrong messages to FDWs, ie using human rights as weapons?
    Maid accepted a job but refused to deliver what was agreed, didn't stop plotting and thus, made my life tougher. Look at my posts, do I deserve lousy helpers after paying so much to employ them? Are maids appreciative? Read my posts on "What maids did"

    Maid owe me good reasons why she accepted my job offer yet refused to deliver a proper job and stop being too prideful/stubborn. Maid is paid to work, a decent job, a job more highly paid than the Sg cleaners, I don't owe her anything nor did I lie about the actual work scope, shouldn't I be angry to be played out by maids? Shouldn't I 'hate' those people who created this mess?

    PMET/foreign talents - they came and took salary that are higher than me, should I be happy to see them in Sg? Did FT stop threatening or robbing our rice bowls? How many foreigners will remain in Sg for 20 or more years? How many come to Sg to earn higher salary and return home after earning enough? How many Sg mentors were being kicked out and replaced by cheaper foreigners?

    Based on what expat employers did, shouldn't these short-term employers pay more as punishment for making our lives miserable? Above mentioned need a "FDW to help me balance children, home & work". You run a business, paying extra $250/mth as levy shouldn't mean a lot to you. Comparing what your predecessors did to the FDWs' market, created an imbalance, do you feel we shouldn't hate you? Hope to accept you as FDW-employer when you don't play fairly?

    Expats paid unbelievable salary and perks that locals couldn't match, is this fair, is this right? Eg one year ago, an experience filipino FDW gets a salary of $500, now this became an inexperience/fresh maid's starting pay. To hire an experience filipino, I know some expats offered at least $700/mth, a private room cum free handphone for the maid! By trying to show you can pay more, what have you done, do you know? You want to employ maids, shouldn't you base on local terms, match it and not try to be so outstanding?

    Did expat/foreigners accept the Sg culture and stop thinking they are better persons?
    Did FDWs accept their contract terms and stop pretending or act like princesses?
    Do I have valid reasons to dislike foreigners?

  11. Your replies are full of sweeping generalisations and not backed up by any provided solid evidence. I feel sorry for you that you live with such hatred and vitriol in your hearts, you must truly be very, very unhappy people to feel the need to be so awful toward someone you have never even met and to pass judgement on someone you don't know. Do you have valid reasons to dislike foreigners, I don't know because you haven't posted any but you seem to want to blame someone/anyone else for your own misery.

    Do you know anything about my life, my circumstances, who I am as a person? No. Then who are you to judge and make such statements.

    1. Didn't I provide valid reasons? You mean you can't see the solid evidence available in my posts and on the news?
      I certainly don't know you but you appeared as a person who didn't suffer in a maid's hand nor willing to open your eyes. The purpose of this blog is to highlight about bad maids and what the maids did, what agencies and MOM made us go through. It is not a platform to praise maids or send cheers to over generous employers who are keen to offer superb pay packages.

  12. It would seem from the replies that despite your blog saying FDW employers are free to post comments they are only free to do so if they wish to open themselves up to abuse from complete strangers.. Is that how you want to live your life? You only want FDW employers to post so you can attack them.

  13. Employers are welcome to post. If anybody ....the nice employers are being attacked here, do you know the reasons why? I'm sure you don't care and unwilling to look at what you've done or what maids/MOM did to cause our anger.

    The bad news for above expat commenter is being attacked. The purpose of this blog is to highlight about bad maids, not a platform to praise maids or send cheers to over generous employers who are keen to offer superb pay package.

    We don't know why nor could believe an expat need a maid so that you can keep your business in Spore. Do you want to step in to let us know more? You may be attacked but I don't agree you've been verbally abused .....it is your choice to comment, vice versa.

    The good news is your identity can't be traced. Be it Annonymous or open ID. So nobody will point a finger on your face. You're welcome to clear our doubts but if we've frightened you, too bad, that's how we felt. Another good news (to me) is that there are people reading my blog, understand what I'm going thru and willing to share/offer support. Thanks!

  14. There’s some problem with this blog, unable to edit or input content.
    Based on the MOM’s latest levy for Service sector, unskilled: S$400. If MOM is really thinking of increasing the FDW levy and wants to encourage those who are holding work permits to employ FDWs, the ideal levy for this group of employers is S$500/mth. PRs pay $400/mth (normal rate) while qualified citizens remain as paying a concession rate of $120/mth.

    The current (normal rate) levy to employ a foreign domestic worker is S$265/mth. If my suggestion is workable, in future, employers who want 2 maids in the same address should pay $800-1000 for their 2nd FDW. The NPTD paper estimated Singapore will need 300,000 maids by year 2030 so I don’t think MOM wants to 见财化水,不能从中牟利. Work permit-employers don’t need to worry that you’ll be weeded out. You will still be able to employ cheap maids, continue to show $power and be the most desirable employers in maids’ view. By offering a private room to the FDW, shorter working hours, give extra off days (not just weekly rest day) …. these are + + +!

    Our PAP still have plenty of rooms for improvement. I hope PAP/MOM is not up to some dirty tricks, one hand gives and the other hand takes back $$ in double!

    In Budget 2013, it was announced that those paying concession rate of $170/mth will receive $50 discount so means some employers are paying $120/mth. I hope this will be the discounted/final amount regardless levy is increased till whatever amount. Those who qualified for FDW grant, if I read the budget correctly, it means paying zero value. I hope it remains … zero, based on per capita income.

    There should be a great difference between Citizens, PRs and Foreigners. The same theory for healthcare and education, foreigners are paying more. Citizens should ultimately be the ones enjoying the country's benefits and receive subsidized rate for holding pink ICs, not forgetting our male citizens went thru National Service for this land.

  15. I find that Singapore employers are unfairly treated. Why Msia only need to pay min wage of USD400 but Spore employers need to pay min USD500? Why HK experience maids drawing similiar salary as the fresh maids here?

    This has nothing to do with high cost of living as FDWs stay in our house, eat our food, we paid everything so that they can enjoy at our expense! What maids need to pay? Only their personal needs such as own phone and sexy clothings.

    Why Singapore employers need to pay security bond and levy but other countries no need? Is it because maids got better agencies looking after their welfare? Spore looked like playground? Sporeans looked like rich idiots who don't mind spending money to meet the maid demands?

    Now MOM thinking of increasing levy, is this how a caring govt should be doing to its citizens? Of all employers, those who are not full time working employee, striving and trying to manage life with dual income should pay a lot a lot more. Tell me something that is fair and music to my ears!

    1. Inexperience ....
      Filipino maid has min salary in Spore ie US$400 = S$500
      Myanmese - $400 to 420, depending on agency
      Indonesian - $450
      Cambodian - $420, the starters will be ex-Malaysia maids which our MOM approved as source country recently

      In Malaysia, fresh maids are paid from RM$700 to 1200

  16. In all other developed countries maids are UNNECESSARY, only very rich able to employ servants. So why Singapore so different?

    Because of STUPID GOVERNMENT POLICIES to favour the rich. Salaries are depressed because people cannot demand for higher pay, foreigners are hired in to keep wages further depressed. So middle class Singapore citizens pay the price--2 parents work in Singapore to get the money of 1 person in a country like Japan or Sweden. Plus, developed countries get welfare allowances and cash for years for having children, ACTION speaks louder than empty words from PAP about having more babies.

    Also, more foreigners here keep land prices up, Singapore citizens struggle with mortgage for a roof over their head, 2 parents working, without laws to protect their job security unlike developed countries--e.g. Germany, Scandinavia, even Japan and Korea, these efficient and highly productive workforce have laws specially designed to favour their own citizens over foreigners, but not Singapore!

    I am not rich to migrate so must vote for Oppositions, whether good or bad I cannot care, just want PAP to see failures, our disappointment and start to wake up, show me concern. PAP has too much power. Only when these balances are re-established then we can talk about any concrete reform for a better Singapore's future! Only then we can proudly tell others this country is our safest haven, we live in a caring and 1st class country, HOME SWEET HOME!

  17. Tis blog is so well written! Totally my thoughts! My maid smokes..1 packet every 2 days! I closed an eye to tat..but i gave up wen she kicked and broke my things wen she trying to get her fix! Tot...i better get rid of her b4 she turned violent!

  18. Maids - women who leave their countries to travel into foreign lands to find employment and earn high salaries. In addition to homesickness and being totally alone in a foreign land, there is the real fear of being exploited and abused. Hence, protection needs to adequately cover both the parties and not just one. Above all, it is not about protecting one party at the expense of the other (employers).

    Personally, I think that it is seriously about time for the government to step up in their regulation of maid agencies and establish some stringent laws/policies regarding the hiring of foreign maids. While waiting for MOM to put on their thinking hats, I seriously advise that every dual income households to install CCTVs at home. It is not cheap, I know, but it could seriously give you some pertinent information about your domestic helper and shows evidence of what she did when you are not around. At the same time, it could also record what the employers did to their maids.

  19. I hope those who intend to hire maids read the unfair polices so that they know what are lying ahead. Unless you are super rich, dont mind paying SGD 500 for a lousy maid type...else, I think everyone who employs a maid should be concerned. It is about you spending money for somebody not worth your money and time but MOM allows such thing to take place for years.

    I think that maid agencies earned high profit margins cos recently just around our small estate, we have 3 maid agencies which has opened up!!!! I am not even counting those in town centre yet...Reminds me of those reno companies who suddenly open up around neighbourhood areas a few years back. I think govt should QC these companies...tsk tsk tsk...so many unethical people around.

  20. My suggestion is that the maid levy should be waived completely.
    The levy distorts and adds unnecessary costs to the monthly household expenditure.

    Keep things simple.

    Let market forces determine the salary each maid receives in appreciation of her services.
    The levy takes away what should go to the maid directly instead.

    As a result, experienced maids leave for greener pastures where they can earn more because $100-$200 per month represents a significant difference to meet their own obligations.

    The attendant costs of replacing experienced maids with inexperienced maids, together with the retraining required is costly and unproductive.

    With our ageing population and attendant elderly issues, requiring more and more home-care, the help of a maid is no longer a luxury but becoming more of a necessity.

  21. Govt must learn to respect and love our countrymen first. Policies that are clearly putting us at great disadvantage should be revised. Too protecting maids is no good.

  22. Do you really need a maid?

    Wrong families being squeezed - regulate maid agencies and FDWs

    MOM - Ministry of Manpower

    Finding a suitable transfer maid

    Maid is a necessity for me

    Live-out option at FDW's cost

  23. Dont understand why maids accepted jobs here and complaining they were not well treated. I believe mosts maids are well treated to the extend of bullying their employers and showed no respect to them but MOM not interested to highlight that there are more nice employers than abusive ones.

    Activists, NGOs, MOM and media have not failed to show their care and favourtism to maids. These unfair policies will remain with more in the pipeline.

  24. I m an employer from Hong Kong . All the things has mentioned on the above is happening in H.K. for over 10 years. Now today, maids from philippine r very worse as in Singapore. Especially, MFMW or Bethune House r teaching or using them to bully employers by helping them to create criminal cases against. the employer. In order they can extend tourist visa so can shop or fool around in H.K. for free. B4 they leave H.K. usually will have over HKD 60000 loan . from fd, employers or steal money from our family. Many problem maid already working in Singapore. In H.K. employers r collecting / sharing the bad maid info. data also. H.K. government has no help at all!!!! One of the bad maid , she just start working in Singapore n her name is Liezi. She own over HKD 30000 from financial companies. She physically abuse new born baby , after employer found out, she used to.cry n excuse on her own family problem such as family member die on each month!!!

    1. Thanks for posting here and letting us know what's really happening in HK.
      The Manpower minister and his gang have to wake up to see that Maids are no longer POOR women Employers can count on as good helpers to lighten our loads. They are not worth the exorbitant fees and salary.

  25. Any Support Group for Singapore Employers with FDW in Singapore? I am physically in Singarpore now for 4 days business trip. I m a member of Support Group for H.K. Employers with FDW. Any chance we (victims from maids) can meet up b4 the end of my trip?

    1. Spore employers are stranded, no organisation or support group available for us. Many people felt we are capable of defending ourselves and bullying maids. Currently, employers are just venting in forum, suffering in silence or become a blogger like me.

  26. Winter, please let me know where we as a maid employer of Hong Kong or Spore can share the bad maid list (passport number n full name w / some letter cross out or photo of them. Now today news from Hong Kong , over 20 groups of maid organization come out asking for raise salary from HKD 4010 increase into 4500 plus 1600 for extra food cost n sleep out (WILL BILL to employer) . They r really crazy for themselves! SOON I think will.happen in Singapore as I can feel that bad maids r using work experience. from H.K. or from Spore to.attract employer to.hire them . We , employers in H.K. r advising that dun hire break contract or in any reason that they not finish contract for 2 yrs! Now bad maids like to.break contract w / us by running away or create criminal cases to stay near 2 yrs in H.k. for part time jobs illegally . We have to be smart to.ask.them for reference check! My suggestion is not to.hire experience maid w/ no reference letter . H.K. employers r willing to.provide if maids r good helper for 2 yrs contract! Here is my email , HKVictimfromfdws@gmail.com, pls contact me to.share news or update black list of bad maids or anything that H.K. / Spore employers. can help each other. We can't act like fool for them bully forever as their grouping power from Spore n H.K. Everyone try to take a closer look of who is playing power from philippines government to enforc local embassy to teach bad maids to take advantage from us . I m also.a mother of 2, bullied by maids for more than 8 yrs . I 've to stop working also in order to take care my kids w/ no choice. Business trip.here is from my husband fyi .

    1. Hong Kong is currently dependent on maids for childcare, because real estate in Hong Kong is expensive, especially first floor - and for safety reason, daycare has to be on the first floor or second floor (in case of fire). Though really, the government can mandate that a new building must zone the first floor to be daycare.

      With Spore, there is enough space for people to have HOUSES, why aren't daycares built? Mentally healthier for kids to be with other kids in daycare, provided by trained locals, who would be cleaner than some FDWs too...

      Sometimes I may wonder if someone is receiving bribes from maid agencies...

  27. Hi Winter or anyone who is so unhappy about maids, why dont u gather all the incidents & submit to MOM & publish in newspaper? I mean not just blogging. We need SOLUTION, not just venting our anger & frustration but in the end still back to zero. Whoever lay those maids rule HAVE TO answer for it. They HAVE TO put themselves in our shoes.

    1. I have submit/feedback to MOM and ministers numerous times but none care. I believe employers wanted to help one another (stop recycle or employ poor quality fresh FDWs) but there isn't an organisation available for us to BE TRUTHFUL and offer assistance. MOM only look at police report. If your maid is a thief, abuser or violated some laws, she is not reported and blacklisted because MOM will not look the sufferer (employer) without proof for them to believe.

      Why bad maids are not reported and can be recycled?
      Some employers want to keep their maid loan. If that maid has been reported, the maid agency eats the money and you buy maid an air ticket home. If MOM/ministers don't step out to point out a feasible route, gathering together is not strong enough to make our voices be heard.... MOM/ministers can continue to delete our emails.

      The polices are meant to protect the maids and agencies. It stated clearly MOM makes employers fully responsible for their FDWs. If maids are bad, you can choose not to employ .... stay home till your finances are dried.... then go and die. Spore doesn't offer free food and lodging for abled persons. You cannot work to sustain life, cry elsewhere, PAP is unavailable! FDWs are meant for the rich, not the poor or middle income who need an extra hands in the house in order to work for an income. You need to work, you need a job but no better option except employ maid .... that's your problem!

      I am blogging to make this FDW problem be well known in the 'net' and hope the problem makers - those who are shaking legs and happily dishing out pro-maid, pro-agency and pro-source country policies to be gunned. Keeping quiet or sending emails are not useful. Media/newspaper only cares about which maid has been bullied or abused ... they enjoy playing heroes, make employers look REALLY EVIL. Media/newspaper doesn't care about justice and fairness ... it is the juiciness of the news and how much readership 同情分. Maids appeared weak and needs protection.

      Suffering alone but nowhere to shout is bad so that's why my blog/forum aims to gather all FDWs' news scattered everywhere, become a one-stop site for mentally & financially bullied FDWs' employer to beware and learn.

      Our elected ministers are paid to handle foreign affairs!

    2. Dear Winter
      I agree with you that writing emails alone is NOT ENOUGH. We employers have to stand together and not work just for ourselves.

      If employers are willing to report and show evidence, then we can get MOM to do something. Don't expect them to say sorry for treating us this way. But I am sure that if employers STOP RECYCLING their maids and daring enough to report their maids and provide evidence, sue the agencies etc... then MOM and all pro maid activist will be forced to eat their words. I can understand why MOM cannot fight our wars for us. It will be too subjective in each and every case.

      Singapore has earned a bad name in the past for ill treating maids I supposed. That's why our ministers are very eager to promote Singapore's "good image" to the world. It's going to take sometime before anyone realises that there are good and bad employers, also good and bad maids. I think the mentality of MOM's officers are slowly changing now as they realised more and more maids are taking advantage of us. I can sense it when I talked to the officers. They are still very cautious but you can see that the tide has turned. Keep up the good work and encourage all employers who are serious about making a change to BE THE CHANGE. Don't recycle maids. Get them out of the country and get them blacklisted no matter how long it takes.

  28. Reading all this, sounds like a bunch of spoilt children. It is not a right you are born with to have a servant in your house, if you cannot afford it, quit complaining and do the work yourself. In most first-world countries normal or average people cannot afford to have maids. Only a few places like Singapore and Hong Kong have separate immigration classifications for people from poor countries to come do the hard work. Please dont complain when conditions change and a small amount of power shifts to the other foot. If domestic economies in ASEAN continue to grow into the future, expect maids salaries to continue to rise. As for your responsibilities as an employer, they are no different from any other direct employer, SME or corporation.

    1. If you are fair and person with sounded mind (in short, you are insane or blinded by your fake kind heart 假仁假义), you should know no employer - NO COMPANY, NO CORPORATION is required to be fully responsible for what their employee did, eg sleep around and get diseases or ill-treat our families/steal/tell lies but NO need to pay back nor be HELD responsible what maids did.

      No company need to fork out cash to solve problems for its cunning/play weakling-employee.
      No company is required by Spore law to 100% pay for its employee's medical and dental. Look at your HR policy/insurance T&C. FDW's employers don't own a company yet need to bear more than any company in Spore.

      If one day maid's salary increase whereas ours didn't rise as much as them, insufficient for us to hire them, then FDWs can rot in their own countries, blame their useless govt because Spore has no job suitable for them. Think too highly of yourself or felt you deserve better? Wake up, we don't owe you! Spore is not maids' cash land. We are not maids, agencies and sources countries' ATM machines.

    2. I agree with Winter. For those who argue about we employers are complaining too much, pls do your homework well.
      Nowadays to have a domestic helper is NOT a luxury AT ALL, it's a necessity.
      Who will want to spend $ to have unhappiness almost everyday? Think about it & speak wisely.

    3. "Reading all this, sounds like a bunch of spoilt children. It is not a right you are born with to have a servant in your house, if you cannot afford it, quit complaining and do the work yourself. In most first-world countries normal or average people cannot afford to have maids. "

      To the writer of this post, I seriously think you have missed the point we are trying to make here. Plus your comments seemed to lack insight and objectivity into the heart of the issues raised here. Either you have no idea what we are trying to get through or you are filled with a "holier-than-thou" self-righteousness.

  29. Hi, to be fair to Winter, are you first of all, an employer of maids? If not, on what basis are you judging Winter?
    It seems that you are not too well informed of current affairs too. Working women in Singapore and HK have to do much more work and face much more stress than women working in first world countries or any whereas. When we come home after work, we do not have the luxury of only working for certain number of hours and must have adequate rest, we have to check children's homework, take care of parents when they are old and unwell, and some even take work home to complete.


This blog is not meant for screw-lose activists or loans. My blog aims to gather all FDWs' news scattered everywhere, become a one-stop site for mentally & financially bullied FDWs' employer to beware and learn. Don't pollute this blog with your pro-maid, insensible and selfish comments! Activists posting here are BLIND IDIOTS, IRRITATING freaks and deliberately showing no RESPECT for others... robbing our only breathing space.