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Wed 26 Oct 2016 12:29 PM

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Saudi women in bid to slash maids' wages

Campaigners say average salary should be halved in light of government cuts

Saudi women in bid to slash maids' wages
Image for illustrative purpose only. (Getty Images)

A group of Saudi women has reportedly launched a campaign to reduce wages for domestic helpers.

Saudi Gazette reported on Tuesday that the group perceives current wages for housemaids as exorbitantly high.

Saudi families’ income has dwindled as a result of austerity measures.

It is campaigning in particular to break the “monopoly” of housemaids who work illegally after running away from their sponsors.

Government austerity measures are hitting Saudi families’ incomes, the campaigners say, while the cost of utilities and telecoms is rising.

The newspaper reported that salaries for housemaids have been standardised at around SR2,000 a month ($533.2) but the campaigners feel this is too high and should be brought down to SR1,000 ($266.6).

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Kalwassia 3 years ago

Hmmm, house maids have high wages?
How about doing the job yourself? A possibility in economic hard times, ahh no that would be too harsh.

Doug 3 years ago

Perhaps rather than suggesting they pay maids less, maybe these people could you know, go out and get a job, or demand higher wages for themselves?

Still, they'll end up getting a nasty shock when exposed to the nature of the free market. If the wages for the maids drop, fewer people will want to be maids, so there'll be fewer to hire, and then Saudis will either have to do their own housework or based on supply and demand, end up paying their maids much more.

Dr.Mohommad Abdul Rafay 3 years ago

The house maids who work in their own country get around SR300 maximum. Being from the same place they work during day time and may be in shifts. They don't get health coverage, free food, free toiletries, entertainment, drinking water, electricity and air condition house to sleep. The salary of SR 1000 is almost equal to Rs 1600 at current exchange rate. Which is almost three times their expectation with free food, health care, toiletries, clothes, drinking water, electricity and clothes. The real problem is the agents and processing of Visa. If I know an eligible maid personally and who is ready to accept the job for SR 1000 is not allowed because of middle man. One should be allowed to bring household helper according to his choice and the person he or she knows. This way both parties are at peace and know each other well. There are many poor relatives who are ready to come to work as they know us but processing of visa and agents raised the cost exorbitantly.

Billy 3 years ago

Shame on you. What you have outlined is undisguised abuse of a poor persons situation and your Indian nationality makes it even worse as many of your own country people are suffering such abuse. Housemaids deserve a decent salary for the country in which they work irrespective of what they would or would not earn in their home country. It is exactly your kind of terrible attitude that is causing the human trafficking of vulnerable people. The Saudi families are well paid and receive major handouts from their Government. They can well afford SR2000 for their home help and if they cannot afford it the solution is not to exploit the maids by cutting their wages it is to get off their own chairs and either work them selves of maybe even do the housework them selves.

Mick 3 years ago

Hey Doc! You're salary should be commensurate to your output and this is not an easy job (not even if we underscore the troublesome atmosphere that they regularly encounter if you catch my drift).
You don't base a person's salary as "well, they are getting more than they would if they were in their own country" and don't confuse "their expectations" with what they would have gotten in the unfortunate situation they were in at home. That's not an expectation. Everyone deserves fair wages for fair work. Unless you come from the upbring that you, clearly, came from and was conditioned in. The maids are toiling with little sleep at the beck and call of their "masters" that can probably afford a giant SUV or diamond studded phone but a human life that wipes up their filth is not worth more than the rag itself. It's disgusting how human nature can be when you are brought up with such little values for humanity. Shame.

concerned 3 years ago

And you said you were a Doctor of What?

Susan 3 years ago

Shame on you.

Hello...... how many countries out there don't even allow their women to work in the ME? Hmmmmm.........because they are mistreated.

Concerned Human 3 years ago

This shows your slave mentality and mathematical skills.
shame on you...

Shocked.out.of.wits 3 years ago

Deplorable Analysis, Dr.Rafay!!

unsolicited 3 years ago

Hey Doc, I am sure you are withdrawing a salary commensurate to your home country and don't forget to count the healthcare, clean drinking water and subsidised food that you must be getting at the hospital canteen, the wide roads, the big house you live in and the lifestyle. I am sure many of those things aren't available in your country as well.