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Thursday, August 18, 2005

Philippine Maids in Dubai Seek Shelter from Abuse

The Arab family that hired Lisa forced her to work impossible hours, she said. Foot massages were ordered at 2 a.m., then breakfast had to be made four hours later. And for half a year, the family paid the Filipina maid nothing.

"I couldn't take it anymore," said the 26-year-old, a tidy woman in flip-flops who sought refuge last week in the Philippine Consulate. "I ran away."

Lisa, who asked that her last name not be used, is one of more than 60 Filipina housemaids living in a makeshift shelter at the consulate, taking refuge from beatings, sexual harassment and unpaid wages. Filipina women have been flooding into this fast-growing city to work as maids for as little as $160 a month. But the influx has led to a doubling of those seeking shelter in recent weeks, with as many as five runaways a day fleeing to the consulate, labor attache Vicente Cabe said Wednesday. Lisa, like the others here, seeks counseling, help in getting back pay and a plane ticket home. It could have been worse. Some runaway maids show up with bruises or allege sexual assault. When they do, consular officials call police. Read More ....

Source: The Mercury News | reBlogged By: News Blog re-Blog
Filed Under: Dubai Maid Abuse, Philippines | Permalink

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