Indonesian Female Migrants and Employers’ Mistreatment in Malaysia: a Case of Domestic Servants from Central Java

Tjipto Subadi, Rahmah Ismail


This paper aims to investigate the main reasons why some Indonesian domestic servants are badly treated by their employers in Malaysia, and to discuss the steps taken by the Indonesian and Malaysian governments to cope with this situation. The study used a phenomenology qualitative approach with a social paradigm definition for the micro analysis. The finding show that the main reasons why the Indonesian domestic servants were badly treated were lack of communication skills and low level of competency; different culture; feudalism; bad institutional structure; and the differences in the Act between Indonesia and Malaysia. The steps taken by the Indonesian government include providing assurance to non-problematic employers for hiring the Indonesian workers, establishing a Cooperation Agency for problem solving, suggesting a one-day or one-week off to the Indonesian domestic servants or giving them compensation, resolving all problems by the Indonesian and Malaysian Cooperation Associations, and revising the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) of the labor force.

Keywords: Indonesian female migrants, migration, domestic servants, employers’, mistreatment

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ISSN (Paper)2224-5766 ISSN (Online)2225-0484

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