Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Nanny Business

I recently saw this documentary on Global TV about "The Nanny Business". The documentary was about Filipino women coming to Canada to work as live-in caregivers with a promise of a Canadian citizenship after 2 years. It sounds like a great deal right? Like these women can bring their family into Canada to escape poverty in the Philippines. The catch is, you have to shell out huge sums of money to pay for processing fees and airplane tickets. On top of that, you have a great risk of falling prey into recruiting agency scams and find out when you land in Canada that you don't actually have an employer. If you do have an employer, you practically work day in and day out with less than the minimum wage and with unpaid overtime.

This is the reality of the nanny business and I have to be honest and say that it is truly heartbreaking to hear stories like these. It made me count my blessings and I am thankful that my family and I didn't have to be in the same situation. My family had the choice to move to Canada while other Filipinos are forced to work in harsh conditions and move away from their loved ones, just to support their families back in the Philippines.

I have friends who are temporary foreign workers and friends who have been nannies in the past and I really admire their courage and strength to face the experiences that they had to go through. It would be nice if the Philippine economy actually improved so Filipinos don't have to move to other countries just to get a better life.

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