Call for http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com to be removed

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Call for http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com to be removed

Postby Chu Liu Xiang » Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:32 am

Website for employers 'violates' privacy of maids

Posts of workers' alleged misdeeds breach their rights by giving personal details, says help group

A WEBSITE where employers can post the alleged misdeeds of their maids has drawn flak from a migrant worker rights' group, which says their privacy is being invaded.

Last week, Mr Jolovan Wham, executive director of the Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics (Home), claimed that the site violated 'the rights and privacy' of maids by revealing details such as their names, and work permit and passport numbers.

This information appears along with lengthy posts of the maids' alleged misdeeds, under a section called 'Maid Reviews', on the site http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com

Describing it as a 'gross violation' in a Facebook post, Mr Wham called for the site to be removed.

Responding to queries from The Straits Times about the site, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) yesterday said it does not encourage employers to publish comments about their maids on their Facebook pages or blogs.

Instead, it urges both employers and maids to approach the ministry for help when conflicts arise.

A spokesman added that there are also 'civil routes for redress for the aggrieved party if the comments are defamatory, or in breach of a duty of confidence'.

The site was created by a 'full-time working mother in Singapore' who calls herself 'Tamarind'. It has six sections, including one that lists maid-related news articles. It is not clear when the blog went live.

'Tamarind' also writes regularly on subjects like how to select and manage maids. These pieces often attract comments - mostly agreeing with her - from as many as 30 readers.

She did not respond to efforts to contact her yesterday.

But in a report by The New Paper last year, she said she has not been sued nor received legal complaints from maids. She added that by warning others of her bad experiences, she was being 'ethical'.

Mr Wham, however, said the allegations listed by the employers were not verified.

He added that he had told a volunteer about the site and that her husband had written to MOM about it last month.

Home is monitoring the blog and is consulting its lawyers to explore possible courses of action, he said, but declined to give details.

Lawyer Chia Boon Teck said a maid can engage a lawyer to take legal action against her employer if she is wrongly accused of misdeeds, but recourse will not be easy.

'The maid may not be able to afford a lawyer, and it may not be easy for her to quantify her loss,' he said.

He added that there is 'no general legal duty to protect the personal particulars of another person'.

The maid may have legal recourse against a blogger for revealing her particulars only if they have a contractual relationship that contains a provision obliging the blogger to keep the maid's particulars confidential, he said. Such a provision, he added, is highly unlikely.

Lecturer Sandra Ng, 37, who uses the blog as a reference, thinks it is fair and does not contain offensive content.

Madam Ng, who has a maid, said it is common for blogs to contain photos. She added: 'It is essentially a site to help potential employers.'

MP Christopher de Souza, deputy chairman of the Government Parliamentary Committee for Manpower, said maids are not in an equal bargaining position when employers make negative comments about them online.

'If what is written about the maids is untrue, then it is extremely unfair as they will have no avenues to clarify their positions,' said Mr de Souza, who was alerted to the blog by a member of the public.

Mr Gary Chin, managing director of Nation Employment, also felt maids were at a disadvantage as they could not reply to the comments.

He said most employers still turn to agencies when they have problems with their maids.

Ms Nelly Baggay, 30, a Filipino maid who came here to work in 2007, said: 'If employers are not happy, they can tell us. If they write bad things about us in blogs, then it will be very hard for us to transfer to other employers.'

wenjian@sph.com.sg


BACKGROUND STORY
UNHAPPY? TELL US ABOUT IT


'If employers are not happy, they can tell us. If they write bad things about us in blogs, then it will be very hard for us to transfer to other employers.'

Ms Nelly Baggay, 30, a Filipino maid who came here to work in 2007


BACKGROUND STORY


Watching your maid's diet

On how much food a maid should have, Tamarind wrote in a post:

'I think as employers, we have to decide how much food is enough. We cannot be supplying unlimited food to our maid. Personally, this is what I would let my maid eat for lunch or dinner:


1. Up to two bowls of white rice
2. Up to two pieces of chicken/fish that is palm size
3. An egg
4. As much vegetables as she can eat
5. An apple, orange or banana
For breakfast, I will let her eat up to four pieces of bread and Milo or coffee. If my maid can eat all the above, I don't even bother giving her any snacks. I believe that she already has more than enough nutrition.


Just make sure that you give her enough food during meals, especially meat, then you have already done your best as an employer. Take a video of what you are serving her. There is no need to worry.'

Note : - Full text taken from http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com

:yikes:
Last edited by Chu Liu Xiang on Tue Nov 29, 2011 12:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Call for http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com to be removed

Postby twotwobravo » Tue Nov 29, 2011 11:08 am

As per all information on the internet, we need to exercise our discretion on what to believe when we see post by strangers…..

Personally, I think this is a very informative experience sharing blog. And the owner have set up this blog with good intention for employer of maid.

As I am looking to employ a maid, I have spent some time to read most of the posting by the blog owner, to me I think she is a fair employer. And I think the ST article on 29 nov 2011 is not being fair to her. It one sided.

I think this blog should stay.

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Re: Call for http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com to be removed

Postby Chu Liu Xiang » Tue Nov 29, 2011 11:15 am

twotwobravo wrote:As per all information on the internet, we need to exercise our discretion on what to believe when we see post by strangers…..

Personally, I think this is a very informative experience sharing blog. And the owner have set up this blog with good intention for employer of maid.

As I am looking to employ a maid, I have spent some time to read most of the posting by the blog owner, to me I think she is a fair employer. And I think the ST article on 29 nov 2011 is not being fair to her. It one sided.

I think this blog should stay.


Well......the NGO thinks otherwise as revealing of maid's name, PP no. and WP no. is unfair to the maid.

If you're the maid do you think it's fair to you if your employer is the nasty one and she/he puts up a bad post about you?

I don't believe in all employers' postings here or elsewhere about all their maids are bad. Do you? Some employers are just as bad as some bad maids, agree?

:xedfingers:

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Re: Call for http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com to be removed

Postby nms1 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 11:50 am

I agree that this site is useful to us employers but imagine how you would feel if your name and IC number were posted publicly on the Internet? The maids don't have chance to tell their side of the story and while most of the postings may be accurate there are some very unreasonable employers out there who will slam a maid for the most trivial problems or have very high expectations.

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Re: Call for http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com to be removed

Postby Chu Liu Xiang » Tue Nov 29, 2011 12:32 pm

nms1 wrote:I agree that this site is useful to us employers but imagine how you would feel if your name and IC number were posted publicly on the Internet? The maids don't have chance to tell their side of the story and while most of the postings may be accurate there are some very unreasonable employers out there who will slam a maid for the most trivial problems or have very high expectations.


If you visit the mentioned site now the blogger, Tamarind, has made some changes

:xedfingers:

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Re: Call for http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com to be removed

Postby twotwobravo » Tue Nov 29, 2011 1:52 pm

Chu Liu Xiang wrote:
twotwobravo wrote:As per all information on the internet, we need to exercise our discretion on what to believe when we see post by strangers…..

Personally, I think this is a very informative experience sharing blog. And the owner have set up this blog with good intention for employer of maid.

As I am looking to employ a maid, I have spent some time to read most of the posting by the blog owner, to me I think she is a fair employer. And I think the ST article on 29 nov 2011 is not being fair to her. It one sided.

I think this blog should stay.


Well......the NGO thinks otherwise as revealing of maid's name, PP no. and WP no. is unfair to the maid.

If you're the maid do you think it's fair to you if your employer is the nasty one and she/he puts up a bad post about you?

I don't believe in all employers' postings here or elsewhere about all their maids are bad. Do you? Some employers are just as bad as some bad maids, agree?

:xedfingers:

If the employer has wrote negative comments of her maid, then he will need to defend what he say is the truth when challenge. Will you also propose to close this site? I do see some bad comments on school and childcare….

There are many types of maids and employers, what is suitable for your household may not be suitable for the others...

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Re: Call for http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com to be removed

Postby madinked » Tue Nov 29, 2011 1:59 pm

Generally I find the blog useful and informative.

About naming names, please, there are so many other blogs there talking about each other. Black listing each other, even at politicians during the election. To say that they can't answer back, true only to some
Extent since the Internet is widely used by the helpers now too. They may not know of the existence of this blog before now, but who knows, as I type this, someone may e gossiping about me on their blog. If I have done nothing wrong, why should I be afraid?

And to quote examples in the papers today, employers would know its useless to either complain to the ministry or even talking to the helpers themselves. Yah right they would take kindly to our criticisms. Right.

Perhaps it may be a little extreme, but I feel the blog is to protect us, te employers in the blogger's own way. If I not wrong, she works in the legal field so she knows her limits. I have read reviews of some of the helper's as there are some really unbelievable helpers out there.

If we say this blog is wrong, then we can say that sites six as hungry go where are bad for food businesses too.

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Re: Call for http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com to be removed

Postby madinked » Tue Nov 29, 2011 2:01 pm

Apologies for the typos. Blame it all on iPhone.

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Re: Call for http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com to be removed

Postby verykiasu2010 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 2:05 pm

it is easy to target a stationary site versus a running commentary like that by CNN which many singaporeans feel was lopsided reporting and stretching the truth quite a bit

why these NGO never targets the CNN ?
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Re: Call for http://singaporemaid.blogspot.com to be removed

Postby verykiasu2010 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 2:07 pm

madinked wrote:Generally I find the blog useful and informative.

About naming names, please, there are so many other blogs there talking about each other. Black listing each other, even at politicians during the election. To say that they can't answer back, true only to some
Extent since the Internet is widely used by the helpers now too. They may not know of the existence of this blog before now, but who knows, as I type this, someone may e gossiping about me on their blog. If I have done nothing wrong, why should I be afraid?

And to quote examples in the papers today, employers would know its useless to either complain to the ministry or even talking to the helpers themselves. Yah right they would take kindly to our criticisms. Right.

Perhaps it may be a little extreme, but I feel the blog is to protect us, te employers in the blogger's own way. If I not wrong, she works in the legal field so she knows her limits. I have read reviews of some of the helper's as there are some really unbelievable helpers out there.

If we say this blog is wrong, then we can say that sites six as hungry go where are bad for food businesses too.


if the Ministry of Manpower has been more responsive to the woes faced by maid employers, such blog would have no chance to exist at all
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