“Maid” in Kuwait – Adding Insult to Injury

Since the dawn of time, families have requested the help of others in taking care of things around the house, cooking, cleaning, raising the children etc.

These hired helpers, domestic workers, were referred to as Maids, which is a short-form of maiden, which also means an unmarried girl.

It is not wrong to rely on others for help; lives today are different than yesteryear and in the days of yore. However, it is very common to read that the most prevalent form of abuse in the GCC region is the abuse of domestic workers; from over-work, underpay, abuse and rape to murder, and everything in between.

That is besides the point I am here to make; it has been brought up again and again in media all over the world and yet it persists, all over the world. The point I am looking at here is their clothing.

for illustrative purposes only

for illustrative purposes only

Certain jobs dictate/require a uniform; security, police, construction, nurses, engineering etc. however, domestic help doesNOT.

I drive by BBS every day on my way to work, I see a gathering of maids waiting across the street for the driver to make his way around the roundabout so they can get back in the car. Some are dressed casually, you would not know they were maids, whilst others are dressed as above.

What is the point of this? With other jobs, uniforms are worn for shifts, periods of time and then are taken off when the people punch out. Whereas maids remain all day in their clothing as they are at the beck and call of their “sponsors”, especially live-in maids. Do they lose their identity and become as they are dressed, day in day out, monotonous and robotic? Blended into the background?

The idea of domestic worker uniforms was back in the days of slavery as a form of ownership. Slavery has been abolished, or so we are lead to believe. What purpose does the uniform serve, that normal clothing cannot? Almost all uniforms are disgusting shades of oh-hell-no I would be hesitant to place on anything, much less another human being.

It is bad enough these people are away from their families for prolonged periods of time, earning meager wages that despite being more than they would at home are not enough to guarantee a life of comfort. It is adding insult to injury to force them to parade around in disgusting shades of purple, green and brown.

There is only one maid outfit that should ever be worn; and all the guys understand where I am coming from. Other than that, laissez faire. 

August 2011 ( View complete archive page )

September 2011 ( View complete archive page )

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