An employment agency is at risk of being shut down by the Philippine government after a Filipino domestic worker died in Kuwait.
In May 2016, Jeanette Plegaria went to Kuwait to work as a maid. She was transferred to three different employers by her employment agency, ABS-CBN News reported.
In November 2017, Plegaria posted pictures of herself on Facebook, which showed she looked fine.
When Plegaria went to work for her third employer, she was not fed enough food and was hospitalized. She was told she needed to have an operation as her condition worsened.
Plegaria’s employment agency did not shoulder her hospital bills and also told her to escape from the hospital. The agency promised her that they would help her return to the Philippines.
On February 19, Plegaria posted on her Facebook page that she did not want her family and friends in the Philippines to know about her condition as she did not want them to worry.
On the same day, the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration posted on Facebook that Plegaria was brought to the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait and her repatriation was being prepared. It mentioned an agency – iRekrut Manpower, Incorporated – in the post.
However, on February 24, a Facebook user posted that Plegaria had died in Kuwait. Gladys Plegaria Bantisil, Plegaria’s daughter, posted on Facebook that she had not seen her mother in 11 years and was devastated about her death.
On February 27, Asia Times reported the domestic worker’s death.
Labor secretary Sylvester Bello III was quoted as saying in an ABS-CBN News report on Monday that if it was proven that Plegaria’s agency neglected her case, they can be shut down as it was the agency’s responsibility to shoulder the medical expenses of their workers.