Letter To the Editor
Safety for expatriate women workers
The economic condition of every person is not same in our country. If we go to village area, women hardly get any suitable job to earn money. Their economic condition is not well off. Most of the male persons living in village areas earn very less money, which is not sufficient to maintain their family.
That is why female workers go abroad. It is a matter of sorrow that they do not get actual wages for their work. Apart from that, they are sexually harassed. When this news is published in newspapers, we are shocked. We cannot give proper facility for them.
Our concerned authorities should take necessary step in this regard in order that women workers working abroad can safely do work and are given proper wages.
According to the Bangladesh Migrant Female Workers' Association, 2500 Bangladeshis, mainly victims of sexual abuse, physical and mental torture and wage denial, took shelter in safe homes, opened by Bangladesh mission in Saudi Arabia, in 2016. There are allegations that Bangladeshi household service workers are often forced to work 18 hours a day in Saudi Arabia and they are not provided meals three times a day. There are also allegations that they are not allowed to contact their family back in Bangladesh.
The government, therefore, must ensure safety and security for female migrant workers through bilateral negotiations with Saudi Arabia before initiating fresh moves to send more women as household service workers there. The government must also take up the issue of workers' rights violation in international forums such as the Colombo process, the Bali process and the Abu Dhabi dialogue.
Sumon Kumar Paul
Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
Patuakhali Science & Technology University