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Necessary checks for domestic staff

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Necessary checks for domestic staff

A working mom would always need a helping hand and most time we open our doors to total strangers because our family and friends are not always available to give us the kind of help we need – ‘necessary evils’ we call them. I have had my own fair share of keeping strangers in my home; most were experiences I would rather not recount.
A colleague who is a single mom needed to engage someone to pick up her kid from school and stay with her till she gets back from work. A few phone calls and a young girl was brought to her and in just two days the girl had to leave and that same day another was brought to replace her.
I couldn’t help but think how we all just bring in strangers to our homes and then heave a sigh of relief – we finally have ‘help’ and can now focus on making money. But is that really the case? I found this list of things to consider when we need to take in a stranger as help in our homes. It is never late to apply this even for those already working for us:
How safe are you with that nanny, maid, steward, cook, security guards, driver, lesson teacher, etc, whether at home or in the office?
We get domestic staff from agents, but do we bother to check where the agents live or what job they do? Do we ever revisit the addresses provided or call to see if there has been a change of address or phone numbers?
Did we register the maid, drivers, nannies etc, we keep in our homes with relevant agencies? Do we even have their photos?
Do you know that your cook, nanny, driver, steward, maid, day care caregivers or home lesson teacher etc, could have a disease? Do we even conduct medical tests for them before we employ them?
Do you know that your driver could be a wanted person by the police in another state for theft or kidnapping? Have you done a check on him with the police with a photo of him?
Has it ever crossed your mind that your security guard could even be a foreigner from neighboring countries such as Niger, Chad and Benin Republic? How do you confirm that? And if he is a foreigner, is he registered by the requisite agencies and eligible to work in the country?
Do you talk about money, your business transactions or cost of your jewelleries and other valuables in the presence of your domestic staff? You might be giving them ideas on how to get money from you and even inform others who could attack you.
Do not allow your domestic staff tidy up your room when you are not there. It could be an opportunity to search your room to know where your valuables are kept and then plan for the right time to operate and run away or even inform outsiders to carry out the operation.
Your domestic staff shouldn’t know all your movement and routines. Go home earlier than normal or leave for work later than usual once in a while. That’s the way to find out what goes on when you are not around.
Don’t allow your daughters get too familiar with your male domestic staff. We should also let our children know that our domestic staffs are not our relatives so our children would not feel obliged to cover up something they should call our attention to.
Don’t wait, do the necessary checks. Let’s keep our families safe.

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