Mandy, less than a feet tall but with a big personality, Mandy knows how to cut hair and make people look beautiful, having worked in a beauty parlor in Bataan. Her husband’s meager earning as a jeepney driver and her desire for a better life for her children, prompted her to accept a job as a domestic helper in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Her agent promised quick deployment under a fly now, pay later scheme. In May 2008, upon their arrival in Malaysia, the women were made to ride in different vehicles. Mandy rode in a vehicle that took her directly to the boss of their local recruiter, a Singaporean who lived in a three story townhouse for two weeks until the agent was able to secure an employer.

She worked as domestic helper for a couple that owned three houses and had four children, with another baby due anytime soon. She worked from5:30 in the morning to 1 a.m. the following day. Her breakfast at 6a.m. consisted of a single piece of bread and a cup of coffee. Her next meal would be at 3 p.m., comprising of bowl of gruel. Unable to cope with the demand of her work, she asked to be retuned to her agent. She was not paid a singer cent for her labor.

After a week, the girlfriend of her agent said that Mandy would be working for a spa. Mandy said she would happy in her new job. Unfortunately, her employer decided to terminate her contract for fear of being caught violating immigration laws. Mandy was granted a visa to work in Malaysia as a domestic helper, not as a massage therapist. Despite services rendered, the petite Filipina was denied her monthly pay. Mandy was told she would not be earning money because she still had an outstanding debt to her Singaporean boss.

Upon her return to the townhouse, her foreign agent asked her to go up to the third floor. There, she was slapped 20 times by her agent. Sandy’s return meant a loss of income as her second employer was asking for a refund. The Singaporean big boss demanded that Mandy admit to stealing money, including customers’ tips that she supposedly should have turned over to the agent. Repeatedly, Mandy denied the allegation, and for every denial, came a slap across the cheek from her enraged six foot tall boss.


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