The Ministry of Interior (MOI) through its Domestic Workers Department Residency Affairs General Directorate has carried out a series of inspection activities targeting domestic labour offices in Jahra Governorate, as shared in a report by the Kuwait Times.
The inspection campaign has resulted in the discovery of a number of violations of these labour offices which led to the arrest of several involved individuals. Some labour offices were also discovered to be sheltering helpers who have absconded from their sponsors.
MOI Raids Unlicensed Domestic Labour Offices in Jahra
And while it’s unfortunate to learn that even Kuwait-based labour offices have been discovered to commit illegal activities based on Kuwaiti laws, it’s not so easy to determine whether the act of sheltering helpers under their management can be dismissed as illegal right away without due process.
According to Kuwaiti laws, absconding, or running away (escaping) from one’s employer without legal consent or is in direct violation of the provisions of one’s employment contract, without having reached an agreement with the employer on the termination method, is a serious matter in Kuwait – which is punishable by deportation or imprisonment.
Regarding this, reasons for employees absconding may vary and may oftentimes depend on employment conditions as well as cases of abuse or violation of your rights. Now that we understand where the law stands in this, it’s important to know what to do to protect yourself from such cases:
If you have been legally ended your work contract with your employer, remember to always have your termination/resignation in official writing so that you will have a valid legal document against being filed of absconding by your employer, for whatever reasons they may have.
And should you decide to leave for concerns over your safety and well-being, it is best to file a complaint first. For this purpose, you may consult with your embassy as to how to proceed with the matter. When a complaint has been officially lodged at the MOI, employers cannot file a case of absconding against you.
Meanwhile, the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait has agreed to waive the requirement of the sponsor’s salary certificate for domestic labour offices, noting that it is not legal in the Gulf State.