Erwiana – stop treating us like slaves

 11.02.2015 - Pressenza Hong Kong

Press Release from Erwiana Sulistyaningsih forwarded by the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC)

Erwiana Sulistyaningsih’s February 10th Speech

10th February, 2015, Hong Kong SAR: I am happy that I won my case and the justice for me and other victims is finally upheld.

I would like to thank Riyanthi for helping me at the airport and make my abused case known to the public, the Justice Committee for Erwiana and Al Migrant Domestic Workers and the Mission for Migrant Workers of St John’s Cathedral and also other good hearted people of HK like the Sen Lok Christian Church who tirelessly supported and assisted me and my fellow friends to ensure that justice is delivered.

Also my appreciation to the investigation and prosecution team of Kwung Tong Police Station and honourable judge Amanda Woodcock who have been working hard to handling my case. I also thank my fellow migrant workers in Hong Kong and the world, the Hong Kong people and the international community who have been supporting me all throughout this trial. Without your support and pressure, the Hong Kong and Indonesian governments might not respond to my case at all.

To employers in Hong Kong, I hope they will start treating migrant domestic workers as workers and human being and stop treating us like slaves. Because as human beings, we all have equal rights.

I hope Hong Kong government will reform their policies that discriminate on and are disadvantageous for migrant domestic workers, policies that make us more exploited. Such as the two-week rule, mandatory live-in policy, no regulations on working hours, accommodation and decent food. Before I did not know anything about these policies.

However, during the process of my case, I realized that my conditions are also caused by these regulations.

To my own Indonesian government, I hope they will not pass on their responsibility of taking care of their migrant workers to private recruitment agencies. Because of this, we are exposed to exploitation and human trafficking. I hope Indonesian government will really address the poverty in our country so people like me will not be forced to work abroad for survival and to face harsh conditions and exploitation.I sincerely thank media friends for your help in picking up and disseminating my story and also the cases of other abused domestic workers to the public. For the longest time, domestic workers are not even recognized as workers, I hope all people and parties will treat us like humans and not like slaves.

What I hope together with my fellow domestic workers are just fair and humane treatment and for people to stop treating us like slaves.

On the sentence for Law Wan Tung, I hope that Law Wan Tung will receive maximum sentence; even though for me, that is still not enough compared to what she did to me and other victims.

For me personally, she should receive life imprisonment for what she did, and for the fact that she does not have any remorse for her past actions while also teaching her children to lie for her. My other reason is because no one could guarantee she will realize what she did to me and that she would not hurt others in the future.

As a human being, I could forgive her and her family but since Hong Kong has a justice system, justice must be upheld.


Read more about Erwiana's case:

Migrant Worker Wins Hong Kong Abuse Case