A quarter of domestic helpers in Singapore surveyed found to have poor mental health

Posted on March 11, 2015

Between November 2013 and May last year, migrant worker welfare group Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics (Home) conducted a survey on 670 maids and found out that about a quarter of those surveyed could be classified as having poor mental health.

Its lead researcher, Ms Anja Wessels, said that compared to worldwide and general Singapore population statistics, maids here are doubly at risk of developing mental health problems.

Director of Passion Maid and Employment Agency, Mr Low Moon Heng, told The New Paper yesterday that some maids are not even allowed to step out of the home for even a minute.

He said: "They have no days off at all. Maids like these have no contact with anybody else, except their employers. They cannot find any other ways to seek help because contact with the outside world is so limited.

The psychologist added that important factors that are beneficial for the good mental well-being of maids include having sufficient rest, a stable social network and a room to sleep in.

She also said that factors which may be detrimental to a maid's mental health include language-related communication barriers and abusive behaviour - especially verbal and physical - by the employer or his/her family.

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Category(s):Workplace Issues

Source material from Asia One