CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 23 February 2019

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Do you have to clean exterior windows? 

We live on the 37th floor of the building and I still need to clean the external windows. Before, my employer used to ask me to do them, but now she does not need to because I have included it in my own schedule.

I just clean them using a wiper to reach every edge and corner, and keep reminding myself to be careful. It is dangerous, even though there are window grills, because the grills may not support our weight, especially when we lean on them with a bit of pressure to reach the dirty parts of the windows. I am not sure how strong the foundations of the grills are.

Praying is one way to give me comfort and safety while doing it and I need to be extra careful. I read the news about the worker who accidentally fell while cleaning the windows, but my employer didn’t talk about it. I saw some workers also doing the same thing as me and I know they are doing everything to be safe.

 — Jelyn Cabonita


I have been working for five years with my employer and I am thankful because they do not ask me to clean the exterior of the windows. I only clean the inside and it is okay with them. I am just lucky with my employer, because they do not demand I clean the windows and my safety is important to them.

 — Jinkz Fortin


Being a domestic worker is difficult, especially if our employer expects something from us. I am lucky, because my previous employer was not demanding about the windows, because I was told to set my top priority on the children, but if I had time I just cleaned the inside part.

I hope my new employer will not demand I clean the external windows, but if they ask me I will explain and talk to them about my safety. It would be good if the Philippine consulate would take action on this issue, because we know some employers are really demanding and the workers are just obediently following orders and afraid of losing their jobs.

 — Julie Ann Gimeno


My employer does not ask me to clean the exterior part of the windows or even its interior upper part. She said they are worried about my safety, because it is dangerous. I only clean them if I have time and they do not complain. I am thankful, because they prioritise my safety. I hope every employer knows how to give importance to the safety of their domestic worker.

 — Tina Macuja


I have been working for five years here with my present employer. On the first day of my job, my employer trained and instructed me regarding my job. I was told to clean the windows only when they are dirty. Luckily our windows have screen protectors to prevent the two cats in the house from jumping out. Every time I have to clean the interior and exterior of the windows, I only need to use a stick wiper with a damp cloth to clean them. When she is there and sees me cleaning, she always reminds me to be careful. In the house, I was given the wiper stick for cleaning the windows. And I think it is safer for a worker to use the wiper stick, because I only need to stretch my arm to remove the dirt outside the windows.


 — Bernadette Sorino