Mizoram's domestic workers vulnerable to abuse:NDWMUT

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Aizawl, Jun 2 (UNI) The Mizoram unit of the National Domestic Workers Movement Welfare Trust (NDWMWT) has contended that a large number of domestic workers in Mizoram, mostly Myanmarese migrants, are being subjected to not only sexual, but also verbal and physical abuse.

Police today arrested a person after the organisation filed an FIR with the Bawngkawn police station on behalf of a 16-year-old Myanmarese migrant, who was allegedly molested by her employer on May 30.

The organisation also alleged that the accused had earlier molested several of his maidservants.

NDWMWT programme coordinator Moses Lalsangzuala said some of the victims of sexual abuse did not reveal their ordeal out of shame and fear of losing their jobs.

Meanwhile, the Chin League of Women stated that there were more than 3,000 Myanmarese girls working as domestic help in Aizawl alone.

The NDWMWT has been working for the welfare of the domestic workers by holding counselling sessions and workshops. So far, it has provided job placements to 20 and vocational training to 15 domestic workers.

Extreme poverty and military excesses, including rapes, in their own country had driven the Myanmarese girls to neighbouring Mizoram, where fear still haunts them , a social worker for Chin women told UNI here.

The NDWMWT had been endeavouring to educate the domestic workers about their rights and protection, but the message could not be reached out to the majority of them due lack of social awareness.

''We conduct workshops every Sunday which is their only off day, but only 20 to 30 of them turn up. This is mainly because many of them do not want to be identified as Myanmarese migrants for fear of deportation. At the same time, their employers do not allow them to attend the workshop,'' a NDWMWT worker said.

UNI ZS DPM RL AS1623

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