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Dear workers, welcome to Kuwait

Talal Al-Ghannam

Good morning, dear brothers and sisters. I wish you all a happy summer vacation. In this article, I would like to propose a scenario which I know everyone wishes that it would be implemented when it comes to hiring domestic helpers, whether male or female, or regardless of working in a house or a company. The scenario starts right at the airport when the domestic worker arrives, and his/her employer would warmly welcome them with a rose. The domestic helper would be amazed by that unexpected gesture, because they were was expecting a frowned face or to be yelled at immediately to start the contract, but it turned out to be the opposite, Alhumdulilah.
The second scenario is taking the domestic helper in the car to go home, and during the journey, there will be an exchange of nice chatting and cordial talks between the employer and the worker to make him or her feel more welcome. “Am I dreaming? Please God, no,” the helper would think to him or herself. And when they arrive home, the sponsor will take the hand of the worker to his or her nice room. “This is your palace sister/brother. Please, do not hesitate to call me if you find any difficulty. We are your family,” the sponsor would say. Dazzled and breathless to experience this unforeseen situation, the worker asks Almighty Allah: “If I am dreaming, then please make this dream come true.”

The next morning, the worker wakes up and is greeted by the entire family for his or her first day. They would start work as usual but without excessive load or schedule given. Six hours of work, then a rest break from 2:00pm to 5:00 pm, with the privilege to use mobile device to reassure and talk to their families back home, with internet provided, of course. The family then decides to go shopping, and accompany the worker with them. The family would get the worker what he or she needs: clothes, hygiene products, mobile credit and other necessities. Once done, they would stop to eat something as a family. Usually, the workers will eat from a table far away. But in this scenario, the worker would be asked to join the family for dinner, to which the worker would be astonished.

The worker would be told that this is the appropriate behavior of a Muslim when dealing with his or her employees as stated in the Holy Quran and teachings of Prophet Mohammad (peace and blessing be upon him). The worker would also be told that Islam forbids the mistreatment of a worker and he or she must be paid before their sweat dries. A worker is considered part of the family, and he or she must be fed, dressed, and given attention like any other family member. They must be given rest time, and not to be yelled at in case of any mistake. A ‘thank you’ is very important; and so is being nice and polite to the workers. They would also be told that kids must also respect the worker, not to increase their burdens and to help them when needed as this is the real Islam.

The journey concludes with a big smile and a promise to the worker that he or she will never regret the day they decided to work in Kuwait for the sake of their loved ones. Imagine this kind of scenario would be implemented by everybody for the sake of the helpless workers, who leave everything in their home country just to come to make a decent life abroad for their loved ones. Let us be their second family. Let us extend a helping hand to them. Let us draw a smile on their faces. They are here to help, not destroy. Let us help them and wait for Allah’s reward.

By Talal Al-Ghannam

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