Woman Fails To Pay Helper’s Salary From April 2018 to 2019, Faces 13 Charges

Domestic helpers travel to Singapore hoping to make an honest living and give their families back home a better life.

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However, some of them meet employers who abuse their powers and mistreat them.

In a press release on Thursday (23 Sep), the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) shared that a 56-year-old Singaporean had failed to pay her helper for a year.

She now faces up to a year’s jail, a fine of up to $10,000, or both, for each of the 13 charges against her.

Woman did not pay helper’s salary for a year

MOM investigations found that 56-year-old Theresa did not pay her former Filipino helper from Apr 2018 to Apr 2019.

Currently, Theresa faces 13 charges under the Employment of Foreign Manpower Act (EFMA) for not paying her helper for a year.

If convicted, she can be fined up to $10,000, jailed for up to 1 year, or both, for each charge.

Helper suspected to have worked part-time illegally

Besides that, Theresa’s helper is also suspected to have worked part-time illegally at another Singaporean’s residence from Aug 2018 to Apr 2019.

According to MOM’s press release, the 43-year-old helper faces 1 charge of working without a valid work pass under EFMA.

If found guilty, she can be fined up to $20,000, imprisoned for up to 2 years, or both.

The owner of the residence is also facing 1 charge of employing the helper without a valid work pass.

She is liable to a fine between $5,000 and $30,000, 1 year’s jail, or both.

Electronic salary payments encouraged

MOM encourages all employers to pay their helpers’ salaries electronically.

woman helper's salarySource

This can be done through General Interbank Recurring Order (GIRO) or direct bank transfers.

If a helper requests electronic payment, the employers must oblige.

MOM added that such forms of payment are prompt and minimise salary disputes as records are kept.

Migrant domestic workers who require assistance on salary or any other employment-related matters can call MOM domestic workers’ helpline at 1800 339 5505.

Alternatively, they can contact the Centre for Domestic Employees (CDE) at 1800 2255 233.

Kudos to MOM for thorough investigation

While some might be tempted to contravene the employment laws in place, they exist to safeguard all parties involved.

Kudos to MOM for their investigation efforts in ensuring rules are followed by both employers and employees.

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Featured image adapted from HAGAR and Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management. Left image used for illustration purposes only.