Doctor 'abandoned sick maid'

A Jordanian doctor could face legal action after reportedly abandoning his Indonesian maid near Directorate of Chest Diseases and Foreigners' Health after she developed tuberculosis.

The 28-year-old woman was allegedly beaten by the doctor’s mother and received no wages during the 19 months that she worked for the family. On admission to hospital (where she is now recovering) her weight was less than 20 kilograms. The Indonesian embassy in Amman says it intends to file a lawsuit against the doctor.

About 20,000-30,000 Indonesians are thought to be employed as domestic workers in Jordan and the embassy operates a special shelter for those seeking refuge from their employers.

The Jordan Times says:

The two countries' labour ministries signed a memorandum of understanding in April this year to regulate the recruitment of Indonesian domestic helpers in the Kingdom.

Minister of Labour Ghazi Shbeikat, who signed the agreement with his Indonesian counterpart, Erman Suprano, said the memo will provide Indonesian domestic helpers in Jordan with legal protection. The memo also entails activating the role of the Indonesian embassy in Jordan in following up on Indonesian domestic workers and addressing problems they face.

Last month, the government exempted hundreds of Indonesian domestic helpers who sought refuge at their embassy in Amman from overstay and other fines and the embassy arranged for a direct flight to take the workers to Indonesia.

Posted by Brian Whitaker, 16 September 2009