Friday, October 06, 2006

Hey, They're Human Too

I was having a drink with a friend last night at a kopitiam and this is what I saw. A big family with kids, aunts, the works...and then there was this maid. She sat on another table far from them, observing the noisy chatter and chaos.. Occasionally, her boss brings food over for her. My friend asked how we would feel if we were in her shoes. It's hard to imagine. I've seen on occasions some Indon, Myanmar workers working in kopitiams who get hit on the head, they eat crap for their meals. Some maids are forced to work for 2-3 households. Or engineers talking about who are the smartest amongst all the foreign workers, Nepalese, Myanmar, Indon etc. It can't be helped I guess, it's only human nature. But has anyone of u stopped ever wonder who these people were, stop and ask how they are? We say how do you do to friends and business acquaintances, don't we? Some tend to think that these people are paid for what's their worth, but hey, it doesnt give you the 'license' to abuse. Emotionally or physically. One day, who knows, the roles could be reversed.


Gallivanter said...

Very good point. I always look at those people who mistreat their maids in public with much disgust. I can't believe people these days, lack of ethics. Utter bollox.

Sha said...

I have pple coming over to my house for hari raya over the years and they would bring their maids along.

It is customary that we give a feast to everyone who comes, so we'd serve the food in the kitchen and invite them to eat.

Some would ask their maid to join them. But there have been others who told the maids (in an authoritative and rude manner) to wait in the living room for them to finish eating, and it only after that that they were allowed to eat.

And when they do, they were also rushed.

My family however, treats our maid like family. We make sure she joins us at the dinner table and buy her nice things when the festive season comes. Like you said, they are humans too.

JT said...

I also agreed with you but to some extend only. We used to have a permanent Indon maid. She was our first maid too. We try to treat her like a family member, and even allowed her to watch TV..and not ask her to eat leftover food. However, she personnaly made it like she do not belongs to the family (this could also be due to the maid agency who warned them what could be done and what could not be done). She would only eat after we finished our meal, though we told her not necessarily.
However, letting her to watch TV is one mistake cos she ended up watching TV more than doing work.
So...for those with maid, do not overwork her but also do not pamper her too much. Make some balance.

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