The Finder readers weigh in.
Neha Varshney Aurora, Indian, mum to an 8-year-old girl
Yes, I think helpers should keep their phone on during the day, but refrain from using it excessively, especially when she still has to complete her assigned tasks.
Helpers need to be happy, too, they are not just machines.
And we can’t stop them from using the phone, so why create situations where she would lie about using the phone and then use it anyway?
However, phone usage needs to be controlled. For example, if she is crossing the road with my daughter, I trust that she is concentrating on the road and not distracted by what is on her phone.
Rhea Hernando, Filipina, mother of two daughters, aged 4 and 8, and one son, 14
I believe it is a helper’s right to have her phone on during the day, but the tacit agreement is that it should not be a source of distraction.
It is the same principle with me when I work – my phone is on, both in the event of an emergency, but also for me to take a break from time to time.
Carolyn Ward, Canadian, mother of a 5-year-old son and 7-year-old daughter
There should be a mutual understanding between the employer and the maid about using her mobile phone during the work day.
Employers should be realistic when setting boundaries and understand that it is not okay to deprive someone of her phone for the entire day. As long as the helper is not neglecting her duties and has finished all her work, she should be able to use her phone in her free time.
Tamara Williams, Australian, mum to a girl, aged 3, and boy, aged 10
I can’t imagine my life if my helper did not have her phone on and with her at all times!
I work full-time and rely on her to look after the house during the day and the kids after school. There is always the odd errand to run or if something crops up last minute, I just message her and know that she will take care of it.
Sometimes she even surprises us by looking up recipes online and cooking them for the family.
Helen Lee, British, mum of a 6-year-old boy
I am a stay-at-home mum and rarely step out during the day once my son is back home, so I prefer that my helper uses her phone only during her afternoon break and then at night after she is done with the day’s work.
Of course, if I do have to leave him at home alone with her, then I ask her to keep her phone on and with her, so that we can be in touch immediately if there is a problem.
By Priyanka Elhence, The Finder, August 2016
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