Story of An Ordinary Indonesian Maid

There are hundreds of thousand os maids working in more developed nations where people which seek their assistance to avoid taking on the burdens of caring for home and children. They are the anonymous and unseen people who clean streets or the mess someone leaves around a house. Miss Taniyen was one such young woman of 25 who made the long journey from her home in central Java to a nice house in Singapore where her employers promised a good job awaited. She arose every morning, cared for the child of the family, cooked meals and cleaned floors and then picked up the poop left by seven dogs in her care. She never complained because a job was important to a young immigrant girl born in the rural area of Indonesia.

One day, her employer, Brenda Tan Bee Khim, got upset because a pile of damp clothes lyin on a sofa had not been picked up. She boiled two cups of hot water, grabbed Miss Taniyen by the hair and proceeded to pour the hot liquid into her mouth. The girl cried in pain, but Ms. Khim then ordered her to mop up the water that had fallen on the floor. As she knelt down to do the task, Ms. Khim poured scalding hot water on her back. A few days later, Miss Taniyen was sent home to central Java without having received any money for her 18 months of labor and with an injured body.

This case is being heard in a court in Singapore. The defense counsel argues Miss Taniyen made no complaint when the incident allegedly occurred so how could anyone believe her story. This is simply another one of those stories about what happens to maids working in the homes of the rising middle class of Asia and the Middle East.