Sunday, March 23, 2008

Elections '08

What is expected or hoped for from our future parliamentarians in regards to human rights issues:

1. Transfer sponsorship of foreign nationals and especially labour expats from Kuwaiti sponsor to government sponsorship.

2. Domestic labour (the ones that work in homes) should no longer be under the ministry of Interior and should be under ministry of labour and social affairs which would include them in the labour law and they don't have laws to protect them if under the ministry of interior.

3. Future MP must pressure all banks to allow mandatory bank accounts for domestic labour, they are not allowed bank accounts and therefore there is no way to know whether they get paid or not.

4. Women women and more women, equal rights with men in all issues especially housing for divorced woman and spinsters within the community and stop outcasting them by housing them in secluded projects.

more later...

Monday, March 17, 2008

From Kuwait City to the Failaka Island

comic relief


Thursday, March 13, 2008

Al Watan TV - Murdered by the house maid

Al Watan TV has a show hosted by Khaled Al-Abduljaleel, a Kuwaiti lawyer, who tackles many social issues such as divorce, rape, child abuse and so on. Last week he had two Kuwaiti families on his show that have family members murdered by their maid. A girl in her 20's and a 7 year old boy not of the same family. It was heartbreaking to see these families suffer the loss of their loved ones through a brutal murder carried by their house maid. I got a lot of calls after the program aired, the context of the calls were mostly angry people asking me to stop being so sympathetic with house maids.

I wonder sometimes, what leads a woman to murder her employers? Could she have come to Kuwait with mental problems? Or was the employer so cruel and heartless to the point where the maid retaliates by killing the most precious person in her employer's life?

I thought Mr. Al-Abduljaleel was very bias in his report, he didn't give us the other side of the story, in this case it's the maid's view (however unfathomable it is). I've seen many cases where maids do not get paid for months and when they do, they are waaay underpaid, they don't get weekly day offs, they work overtime, they have to deal with physical and emotional and verbal abuse. Most of the time, there is no way out of their situation which leads to suicide, run-aways and in some very unfortunate cases .. murder.

My heart goes out to both families.

Monday, March 3, 2008


Manicure and Pedicure = 10 kd ... twice a month = 20 kd

Blow dry = 8 kd

Color/Highlight = 40 kd

Waxing/Threading = 5 kd ... twice a month = 10 kd

Total monthly cost = 78 kd

* 78 kd/month on self maintenance (female kuwaiti employer)

Waking up at 6 am = ?

Waking the kids up at 6:30 am = ?

Making breakfast = ?

Dropping kids off to school = ?

Tidying the beds/laundry and ironing = ?

picking up kids from school = ?

Preparing lunch = ?

running house errands all day (Get me this and that) = ?

No afternoon rest = ?

Preparing dinner (9 pm usual time) = ?

No weekly day off = ?

Total cost = 60 kd

* 60 kd/month is on average what a domestic worker in Kuwait gets paid. Throw in verbal abuse and some physical abuse and overtime and degradation. (also includes the ones that work in mansions and palaces.. hint)

What can i do to change things? ... Nothing (pitiful).

My state of mind: Sleepless nights in agony