Malaysian Maid Online System (SMO): Indonesian Migrant Worker's Protection at Stake

Syifa Khairunnisa(1*), Monica Bening Maeria Anggani(2)

(*) Corresponding Author


While international labor migration is an important sector of the Indonesian economy, a significant number of migrant domestic workers are still facing issues such as exploitation and the lack of legal protection. However, another problem arose in early 2018 when Malaysia implemented the Direct Hiring Policy, namely the Maid Online System (SMO), which allows an employer to hire a migrant domestic worker without going through an agency. The Indonesian government expressed their opposition to the policy since it contradicted Indonesian laws and regulations that protect migrant domestic workers. This policy raises the vulnerability of Indonesian Migrant Domestic Workers towards the violation of their rights and wellbeing as there is no oversight by the partner agency. This article is based on normative legal research, done by reviewing laws and regulations that apply to this specific legal issue. In conducting this research, authors used secondary data obtained from official reports and news portals, legal journals, and related regulations to analyze Indonesian laws and regulations that do not correspond to the Direct Hiring Policy, Indonesian’s stance regarding this, as well as the risks and impact of the policy for both countries.


Indonesian Migrant Domestic Worker, Law on Protection of Indonesian Migrant Workers, Maid Online System, Indonesian government, Malaysian government

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