Tuesday, July 19, 2022

The Hidden Room - domestic workers' plight highlighted

The Hidden Room... When asked about what is their preferred room in the house, domestic workers/house helps/nannies/caretakers/housekeepers always point out to specific places in their employer's home. Which is never their own bedroom - their own little place where they have to cram their belongings with portraits of their children, or loved ones, they have left behind in their own original home countries. 

Wasanti, Melat, Queenie, and Resha could have had any other name or came from any other country, but the stories often converge. The short film (which you can watch here) highlights that no matter how big their employers' home/villa/high-rise apartment their own space remains almost the same (2x3 meters or 7x10 feet).

Of course, one of the problems is when people who help families get lumped into one specific category or appellation, and as much as the Arab nations are inherently racist, classist and derogative in mind, it does also annoy me to see all employers lumped in the same way (am sure some employers treat their help in a very dignified manner).

The movie was done for Home Box a furniture store - and the survey was done with 329 different people about their preferred place in the houses they were working in. The workers much deservedly got an upgrade to their living quarters courtesy of Home Box. Still, the film is indeed well done and does highlight the plight of migrant workers in a very good way. You might want to check how the film was done here.