Indonesian migrant workers will always be vulnerable unless the government imposes strict policies to protect them throughout the whole process — from recruitment until their return from overseas employment.
When it was first reported that Satinah, a migrant worker from Ungaran, Semarang, Central Java, was to face the death penalty for killing her Saudi Arabian employer, the state’s response was too late. Further, the negotiation process appeared ineffective.
“The government had no intention to save Satinah from the death penalty,” Migrant Care executive director Anis Hidayah said at a discussion held by the International Labor Organization (ILO) to commemorate International Migrant Day on Dec. 18.
After tough negotiations, the Saudi government accepted Rp 7.7 billion (US$793,100) in compensation and released Satinah. She was previously required to pay diyyat...