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    Mar 17, 2014

    Bosses look to give weekdays off

    INDONESIAN maid Farida Gahro, 45, takes one Wednesday and three Sundays off a month to study cooking, business and caregiving. "I like classes because I can bring the knowledge back to Indonesia and, maybe, I can start a small restaurant," she said.

    Several bosses of maid agencies told The Straits Times that they have seen more requests from employers for maids to take their days off on weekdays.

    More may do so in the future, as new and renewed contracts come under the weekly rest day rule that kicked in last year. The rule does not specify which day the rest day falls on.

    A common reason cited for giving a day off on a weekday is that the employers need a maid to care for their elderly and immobile parents on weekends, when they are resting.

    Madam Lily Ngieng, who is a partner at Lily Employment Agency, said: "Some employers work on Sunday and need someone to take care of the children."

    One such employer is Mrs Jenny Ng, 35, a sales assistant, who works through the weekend as "that is the busiest time for sales".

    Her last maid, who worked with her for four years until last August, would sometimes take a weekday off so she could help to look after Mrs Ng's toddler on Sundays.