MANILA, Philippines – An Emirati video blogger has taken up the cudgels for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) following the viral rant of Kuwaiti beauty blogger Sondos Al Qattan against a new policy giving domestic workers in Kuwait a weekly day off and the right to keep their passports.
In a video blog posted on his Facebook page, Khalid Al Ameri turned the tables on Al Qattan and asked her, "How would you feel if you worked for someone that didn't only not give you a day off but disagrees with the very ideology that you deserve a day-off?"
Al Ameri noted that "almost every job in the world... deserve a day of rest, a day to go out, a day to enjoy life."
"We are not robots," he added.
On Al Qattan's argument that domestic workers might run away if they are allowed to keep their passports, Al Ameri said there's a "reason" why this may happen in the beauty blogger's case.
"After listening to your rant, if I work for you, I would run so far away, the CIA won’t be able to find me....I would disappear. I would cease to exist. I would never show my face in this world again, out of fear that you might find me and that you might ask me to work for you again," Al Ameri said.
"Believe me, there’s a reason they keep running away from you. Maybe you are that reason," he added.
Al Ameri ended his vlog by saying that all people are human beings who want the same things in life: "To be happy, to grow old with people that we love, to take care of our families, and to just be at peace."
He also expressed his gratitude to domestic workers in his country. "On behalf of my country, my family, I want to thank every single domestic helper in this part of the world for helping us and for being part of our families," he said.
Al Ameri is a blogger based in Abu Dhabi with almost a million followers on Facebook. He has been very open about his fondness of Filipinos. In January, he posted a blog thanking Filipino workers for making his country "a better place."
Al Qattan is a make-up artist and social media celebrity in Kuwait with more than 2 million followers on instagram. Following the public outcry against her remarks, several sponsors have cut ties with her.
Philippine migrant groups have also demanded a public apology from Al Qattan and want her to be blacklisted as an employer of Filipino domestic workers.
The backlash of her actions have not deterred the beauty blogger. In an instagram post on Thursday, July 24, Al Qattan stood by her words, saying that she has never mistreated or degraded any of her employees, and that the passport of employees should be in the possession of employers to "protect the employer's interest. – Rappler.com