Mar 03, Colombo: The Sri Lankan government is initiating livelihood assistance programs to discourage women seeking employment as housemaids in Middle eastern countries, the Child Development and Women's Affairs Minister Tissa Karalliyadde has said.
Under this livelihood assistance program the government will grant equipment worth 50,000 rupees to each selected needy family to start self-employment.
Currently the government is distributing the self-employment aid to poor families in the Ampara District, the Minister has said.
The government has launched a new programme to train the women, seeking employment overseas, to become skilled workers, Minister of Foreign Employment and Promotion Welfare, Dilan Perera has said.
According to Minister Perera, the women will be given training at 25 vocational training centers all over the island on host country language, the handling of electronic and electrical equipment, and basic health matters to meet the challenges in the host country.
It will be mandatory from April for the women seeking employment in the Middle East to successfully complete the level three of the National Vocational Qualification test.
Following the execution of Rizana Nafeek by Saudi authorities in January this year, Sri Lanka raised the minimum age to 25 for house maids going to Saudi Arabia for employment while for other countries the women must be at least 23 years old.
According to Minister Perera, the government has launched an exclusive programme to send skilled workers and professionals to the foreign job market in the Middle East, Europe, UK and USA.