MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) on Friday, July 27, said the Kuwaiti social media influencer who remained unapologetic about her statements against overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) “should be blacklisted” as an employer.
CFO Undersecretary Astravel Pimenetel-Naik said Sondos Al-Qattan “should be blacklisted and included in the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration’s (POEA) list of undesirable foreign employers” if she does not retract statement that OFW maids should not be given days off.
Al-Qattan had disagreed with the Kuwaiti government’s policy to allow OFWs to keep their passport during their tenure in Kuwait and have enjoy days off from work.
“The new laws that have been passed are like a pathetic film. For her to take a day off every week, that’s 4 days a month. Those are the days that she’ll be out. And we don’t know what she’ll be doing on those days, with her passport on her,” Al Qattan said in Arabic in a now-deleted video, according to a CNN report.
Groups like Migrante International and the Blas F. Ople Policy Center have called for Al-Qattan to apologize for her remarks.
A number of beauty brands, including M Micallef, Beauty Boutique, and Shiseido, dropped the influencer as a result of the backlash. (WATCH: UAE vlogger defends OFWs against Kuwaiti influencer)
The CFO’s statement underscored the importance of the bilateral pact between the Philippines and Kuwait, which protects the rights and welfare of OFWs.
“Our OFWs are workers, not slaves. Foreign employers should ensure that the OFWs‘ dignity is honored and their rights as human beings are upheld and respected at all times. They play an integral role in the attainment of ‘Decent Work,’ which is the common aspiration of people in their working lives.” – Rappler.com
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