The Philippines wants recruitment agencies that send domestic workers abroad to have a Facebook account to help curb abuse.
They have until March 13 to comply, Ming Pao Daily reported Tuesday, citing a circular from the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration.
Administrator Hans Leo J. Cacdac said the requirement applies to recruiters, not to domestic helpers, and will be part of the agencies’ report on the status and condition of their deployed workers.
It is intended to serve as a communication platform for complaints, disputes and related issues, helping efforts to prevent abuse.
However, Hong Kong-based International Migrants Alliance said the new policy is unnecessary.
A spokesman said there is no way anyone who is being subjected to severe abuse has any chance to use Facebook to call for help.
But domestic helpers in Hong Kong can always go to the police or the Philippine Consulate for assistance at any time, he said.
Liu Tsui-lan, managing director of Technic Employment Service Center, said she has reservations about the requirement because of privacy issues.
Liu said employers’ private information might be compromised if the policy does not include safeguards.
Hong Kong is home to more than 320,000 foreign domestic workers, half of them from the Philippines.
In a recent case, the family of a Filipino domestic helper in Kuwait was able to get help from the Philippine government after she posted on Facebook that she had been attacked by her employer’s pet lion.
She posted the incident shortly before she died.
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