There is now an increasing demand for Filipina maids due to growing dissatisfaction with Chinese ayis, and agencies which offer domestic services are making handsome profits from this trend, according to China Daily.
For example, VeryMaids Co, a recruiting agency in Beijing, recently raised its fees from RMB 10,000 to 15,000 for the hiring of Filipina maids. And it has plans to raise it further to RMB 20,000 by the year-end.
Despite its growing popularity, hiring a Filipina maid in China doesn’t come cheap, nor is it legal (strictly speaking). It costs RMB 25,000 to 30,000 to initiate the process, and a Filipina helper’s salary is around USD 500 per month. As far as its legality is concerned, the domestic labor market is still closed to foreign maids, so recruiters have to come up with fictitious companies which will then hire the Filipina maids as their “employees”.
As far as the growing dissatisfaction with ayis is concerned, China Daily cited the example of Jing Jing, 28, from Beijing. She has a nine-month-old child and had to change her ayi four times since the birth of her child. Each of her ayis had left for personal reasons. "An ayi can find reasons to leave the family at any time. There are no laws or a system to regulate this market," complained Jing. "There is also no clear standard for pricing, service and training."
It takes two to tango, as the saying goes. If Ms Jing goes through four ayis in nine months, one can’t help but ask if she was somehow responsible for their leaving. I doubt very much that ayis are protected adequately from unreasonable or even abusive employers under the current Chinese laws. So, in view of the absence – or the non-enforcement – of such laws, it’s a good thing that ayis are still free to leave the family at any time when she no longer feels comfortable working for her employer.