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Article

Domestic workers in Gulf states face COVID-19 job losses & abuse from recruitment agencies

"In Arab States, coronavirus pandemic traps African domestic workers who fin themselves unemployed, abused," 7 Jul 2020

Nine African women lost their jobs as domestic workers in Saudi Arabia because of the coronavirus lockdown, the agency that had recruited them [imprisoned them]...

since March. One is now six months pregnant but receiving no maternity care. Another tore her clothes off in a fit of distress, so the agency chained her to a wall.

The women receive food once a day... but don’t know when they [can] return to their countries...

For the Kenyan women, the agency that recruited them in Kenya is responsible for helping them return home... [it] is no longer answering its phone or responding to messages...

The women said they had been locked up by their Saudi agency, Almuhait Recruitment. It did not respond to requests for comment...

After The New York Times contacted Almuhait Recruitment about the women’s situation on Sunday... several of the women, including the pregnant woman, had been taken to a hospital for medical checkups and COVID-19 tests.