Most helpers say employers buy them their own food when they dine out, but some have different experiences.

SINGAPORE: The topic of how to treat domestic helpers has been discussed numerous times on online platforms, and one Singaporean recently added a layer to the conversation by asking both employers and helpers the following questions in the Facebook group ‘ MDW in Singapore’:

“Question for helpers: Does your employer buy you your own food when they take you outside?”

“Question for employers: Do you order a separate meal for your helper when you take them out? Or do you just order 1 set and share it with them?

Most of the commentators who participated in the discussion were assistants. Many of them shared that their employers are quite considerate when it comes to dining out.

Instead of simply ordering a single meal for everyone to share, these employers go the extra mile by allowing their helpers to choose their own dishes at restaurants.

One assistant said: “If we go out to eat, my boss will always ask me what I want to eat. And if we go to a restaurant, she hands me the Menu book and I choose what I want.”

Another helper mentioned that even when her employers dined out without her, as she sometimes preferred to stay home, they still asked her what she wanted to eat so they could order takeout.

An employer also chimed in and said, “She can choose what she wants to eat, whether at the restaurants or at the food center, so she gets her own plate of food. It is shared only in Chinese or Japanese restaurants where dishes are ordered to share.”

However, amidst all these positive stories, there were some helpers who felt that their employers were not as caring or considerate. One mentioned: “Last time I had a boss. They eat while I feed the child and watch him eat. While I’m hungry.”

Another aide spoke of her early days in Singapore, where her employers ordered fine meals like steak and beer while she fed her children. Later, she would only be given a simple loaf of bread to eat after everyone else had finished.

She said: “I’m very, very good, but I’m not happy with the way they treat me outside… if you don’t want to buy me food, let me stay at home or whatever.”

Fortunately, she found new employers who allowed her to celebrate her birthday alone at the restaurant. She then jokingly added that she hoped to run into her former employers again someday and said, “I hope to meet them inside the restaurant.”

Coincidentally, a woman took to social media earlier this year to ask employers not to bring helpers into restaurants unless they were dining with them.

“Dear employer… If you cannot buy some food and drink for your helper… Please do not take your helper to an expensive restaurant, even if just to watch him eat,” the woman wrote.

Read more: Woman begs employers to buy food for her helpers when they go out to dinner at a restaurant

Featured image from Depositphotos

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