M'sians scramble to hire maids

Petaling Jaya (The Star/ANN) - With people in Malaysia desperate to hire them, maids are now having the upper hand.

Given how difficult it is to obtain maids, many employers are even willing to tolerate behaviour that they had formerly frowned upon.

Former employer Tammy Wong, 40, believes it's now a "maid market" as employers are desperate.

She had employed maids for 16 years before she decided to stop hiring them.

"My Cambodian maid's attitude really changed during her final year with us. Why, she once told my children to have pizza delivered as she did not want to cook dinner," she related.

Wong said this was just one of numerous incidents with her maid that left her torn between anger and laughter.

She recalled one incident in which she had come home stressed from work and asked her maid to turn off the loud Cambodian music she was playing on her mobile phone.

"She refused! She sometimes also insisted on cooking dinner with her mobile phone in one hand. On another occasion, she insisted on washing the car in the rain. I tried to view it humorously or it would have been really unbearable," she said.

Wong, who has teenage children and wants them to do their own household chores now, said she felt sorry for families with young children.

"I really feel for them. At the end of the day, I think there can never be a perfect maid. But the situation is such that there are families who require them, and just have to make do with the maid they get," she said.

It has been reported that at least 100,000 Malaysian households are desperately seeking to employ maids and only a limited number are on their way here in about three months.

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