Make specific report on domestic helper abuse - Immigration dept

PUTRAJAYA: The Indonesian Embassy here has been asked to lodge a specific complaint on the abuse, mistreatment, and exploitation of Indonesian workers in Malaysia for further investigation and action.

In a statement today, Immigration director general Datuk Ruslin Jusoh said that so far he has not received any official complaint from the Indonesian Embassy regarding the matter.

"The Home Ministry and the Immigration Department take this issue seriously and will not compromise with any employers who abuse and mistreat foreign workers.

"Strict action will be taken against employers who violate the law and regulations related to the hiring of foreign domestic workers," he said, adding that those who commit an offence under the Immigration Act 1959/63 would be charged in court and blacklisted from hiring foreign domestic workers.

He said this in response to the statement by Indonesian Ambassador to Malaysia Datuk Hermono regarding the issue of mistreatment of Indonesian domestic workers in this country yesterday.

Hermano was reported as saying that about 90 per cent of the complaints received by the Indonesian Embassy related to domestic helpers, signalling a distressing trend that requires an amicable resolution by Malaysian employers and stringent enforcement by authorities.

Ruslin said the welfare and protection of Indonesian domestic workers are among the matters that have been included in the memorandum of understanding between the governments of Malaysia and Indonesia on the hiring and protection of Indonesian domestic workers in Malaysia.

In addition, he said the Immigration Department constantly working with relevant agencies such as the Department of Labour of Peninsular Malaysia, the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants Council, the Royal Malaysia Police and the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia to curb the exploitation of foreign workers, including those from Indonesia.

"We also urge the public to report and channel any information about employers who abuse or exploit foreign workers so that strict action can be taken against them," he said.

According to Ruslin, as of Oct 16, a total of 447,094 Indonesian workers hold a temporary working visit pass, of which 57,916 were domestic workers. – BERNAMA

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