Foreign workers recruitment start here

JAKARTA: A single window system to register foreign workers online will be implemented next month to tackle the issue of human trafficking and victimisation of foreign workers.


Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who is also home minister, said the system would apply to all manpower-supplying nations, except Indonesia, which would follow suit after a meeting in Putrajaya next month.

“It will also be implemented for Indonesian workers following the signing of an official agreement after next month\'s meeting,” he told a media conference after a meeting with Indonesian Manpower and Transmigration Minister Muhammad Hanif Dhakiri here Saturday.

He said the single window system was to ensure only one channel for the approval of foreign workers, namely, applications online.

“This is to prevent misappropriation, or excessive payment or recruiting of workers without employers … so that there is a coordination of workers, no longer without employers resulting in them becoming illegal foreign workers,” he said – Bernama


It will offer services such as cleaning, scaling, extraction at fraction of cost at private clinics

Construction worker Kan Guohui is having trouble sleeping. His toothache, he said, makes him feel like his mouth is \"on fire\".

But the 49-year-old, who hails from Anhui province in China, is adamant that he does not want to see a dentist. \"Do you know how expensive that is in Singapore? I\'ll just try to get some antibiotics and maybe it will go away.\"

For foreign workers here, a dental visit is often the last thing on their minds - until something goes wrong. Even then, many prefer to bear the pain, rather than pay for expensive dental treatments.

To tackle the dearth of affordable dental care for these workers, migrant workers\' group HealthServe will open a new dental clinic at 1, Lorong 23, in Geylang, today.

It will offer foreign workers services such as cleaning, scaling and extraction for just $10, a tenth of the possible cost at private clinics.

For those out of work, the services will be free. Dentists at the clinic will also provide their services for free.

Subsidised dental clinics for foreign workers here are scarce. The most prominent one was opened in April last year by the Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics (Home), which treats maids primarily.

HealthServe will instead target male foreign workers in industries like construction and shipyard.

Its chairman and co-founder, Dr Goh Wei Leong, estimates that one in 20 workers who visits its Geylang clinic for medical consultation also has a dental problem.

Until now, it has not been able to do more than prescribe antibiotics and painkillers.

Under Manpower Ministry guidelines, employers are responsible for the cost of dental treatment for their work-permit or S Pass holders. But Dr Goh said this rarely happens in practice.

\"By and large, employers do not look after dental (issues) if they are not life-threatening,\" he said.

The Home dental clinic, which serves about seven people each Sunday, is closed for two months as it relocates to new premises.

Home operations director Valli Pillai said: \"We get calls every other day from people asking when the clinic will reopen. It\'s good that HealthServe is opening one, too, because with only one day (of operations) in a week, we can\'t serve all the migrants.\"

The new HealthServe clinic, which cost about $40,000 to set up, is a modest back room with a second-hand dental chair. Many of the supplies will be provided by eight volunteers, who are all dentists with their own private practices.

Dr David Cheong of Aloha Dental, who heads the team along with Dr Lewis Lee, estimates that they will be able to serve five people each session.

They will start off with one session every Wednesday evening. \"But if we get more volunteers... we could expand this to at least another weeknight, and perhaps even a Saturday afternoon,\" said Dr Cheong.

This will be welcome news to the more than 20 workers who have made dental appointments so far, on a waiting list that grows daily.

Bangladeshi plumber Humayun Bepary, 40, is hoping to get on that list.

\"My back teeth (have) so many lobang (Malay for hole). But to take them out, it is always money, money, money. After this new clinic opens, I will go.\"

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WHILE most of those living beside foreign worker hostels may feel unsafe or are plagued by various issues, residents in SS9A Sungai Way are actually sad at the prospect of the workers moving out of the area.

To these residents, the migrant workers are already part of the community; and they support local traders and keep their businesses such as eateries and grocery shops going.

However, these migrant workers will soon be calling a new development in SS8 home.

Known as the Petaling Jaya Elevated City, the new development is located in the Sungai Way Free Trade Zone where the migrant workers are employed.


“Moving there will be easier for them as it will be closer for them to get to work.

“But it will be a loss for our community as we have all learnt to live together over the years,” said the Community Security and Development Committee (JKKK) chairman Ding Eow Chai.

He explained that the workers occupied more than 100 houses in the neighbourhood and each unit could accommodate more than 60 occupants, sometimes even up to 100.

Unlike other overcrowded hostels in Klang Valley, the ones in Sungai Way are much bigger than normal terrace houses, with land sizes of more than 5,000 sq ft.

Most owners have renovated their houses to make the property three storeys high while others build a few different units on the plot of land to accommodate more tenants.

Driving around the narrow Sungai Way roads, visitors will be able to see some houses labelled with alphabets, to represent the different units on a piece of land

Also, there are multiple water meters seen in the compounds along with multiple electricity meters lining the walls outside the houses.

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KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia and Indonesia have agreed to review the mechanism for hiring and managing Indonesian foreign workers in Malaysia.

​This was agreed upon at a bilateral meeting between the two countries over the hiring of foreign workers and maids from Indonesia, at the sidelines of the 10th Asean Ministerial Meeting on Transnational Crime (AMMTC) here Thursday.

​\"On the basis of the close diplomatic relations between both countries, Malaysia and Indonesia are taking the initiative to review the mechanism of hiring and managing Indonesian foreign workers in Malaysia.

\"It is hoped that the improvements will have a positive impact on both countries, and benefit both Indonesian foreign workers and their Malaysian employers,\" said Indonesia\'s manpower minister Hanif Dakhiri in a statement after the meeting.


Hanif added that a further discussion between senior officials of both countries on the matter is expected to take place in mid-October.