Proper Meal and Rest time for your Helper
Everyone will definitely know about Erwina’s case in 2014. This case has created a tremendous social awareness on the domestic helper exploitation. Ironically, it has been 4 years since then and the number of helper exploitation cases annually has yet to decrease.
According to a survey done by Forbes Magazine, 90% of the domestic helpers stated that their employer does not provide them with adequate amount of rest time. Numerous of the participant also mentioned that on average they work 71.4 hours on a weekly basis as compared to the Hong Kong city’s average work hours which ranges from 40-50 per week. Although the legislation on the maximum working hours for domestic helpers in Hong Kong is not yet constitutionalize, however, helpers should still be given a sufficient amount of break and rest. Domestic helpers have a very demanding day to day workload as it requires a lot of physical as well as emotional energy to ensure that their employers’ house is clean and also take care of the children or elderly. As a result of working long hours, their physical mental health are threaten and a lot of them even suffer from fatigue or anxiety.
Therefore, it is essential that employers ensure their helpers received a sufficient rest time and concern about their helpers physical and emotional well-being. It is believe that when helper have proper rest, they will have a better focus, more happy, more energetic and able to finish their work more efficiently. Thus, we suggested that domestic helpers should not work longer than 12 hours so they have more personal time and refresh their energy. Moreover, the helpers can take a 10 to 20 minutes break for every 3 to 4 hours work to relieve their physical stress and regain energy.
In addition, in a seperate new from South China Morning Post, it is reported that many of the domestic workers are well supplied for food by their employers. According to the government policy and employment contract, it is clearly stated that employers have the obligation to provide sufficient food or else subsidize the domestic helper to find her own nourishment. In on the article published by Harvard Health Publishing, it is emphasized that through a balanced diet, one keep their energy at high level and maintain a better focus throughout the day. Hence, we suggest employers to always provide a proper diet not only for their family but also towards their helper. Ensure that there will always be vegetables, meat, and even carbohydrate component such as rice to boost your and your helper’s energy everyday. Another suggestion is that employers should also know the restriction on food not only limited to religion restriction such as pork or beef but also some other food that your helper might be allergy with.
Through this blogpost, we hope after implementing the step aforementioned above, employers and helpers can live together to create a communion and joyful working environment.