Philippine recruitment agencies to stop sending maids to UAE

Posted at 06/23/2014 3:09 PM | Updated as of 06/23/2014 3:10 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Philippine recruitment agencies will stop sending household service workers to the United Arab Emirates by July, according to recruitment consultant Emmanuel Geslani.

The reason? The UAE Ministry of Labor is implementing a unified contract which does not conform with the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration's HSW Reform Package standard employment contract.

The new rule prevents the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) labor attaches in Dubai and Abu Dhabi from "verifying and attesting the POEA HSW standard employment contract" for Filipino maids.

Geslani said the Philippine Manpower Agencies for the United Arab Emirates (PAMA-UAE) is disappointed with the UAE's new rule which will be implemented on June 1.

He said they expect the deployment of Filipino HSWs to the UAE is expected to drop sharply. He noted the verified contracts signed by Philippine labor officials before June 5, 2014 will run out by the second half.

During the association's meeting with POEA Administrator Hans Cacdac, Geslani said they were advised that only the standard HSW employment contract will be honored by the POEA for deployment to the UAE. Cacdac said any violation of the HSW package will result in the cancellation of the agency's license.

Geslani said the UAE's new rule was enforced in light of the Philippine embassy's procedures of imposing conditions on the domestic helpers brought into the UAE. The embassy's procedures was seen as some UAE officials as contravening the international law since "embassies have no right to interfere in countries’ internal affairs and levy special conditions."

Data from the POEA showed the UAE is the second largest destination of land-based OFWs in 2012. There were 260,000 new and re-hires deployed in 2012.