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Beaten-up DH flies home with $15,000 settlement

16 September 2017

By Vir B. Lumicao

A Filipina domestic worker who was mauled in June by her employer’s wife just six days into her two-year service, has gone home with $15,000 settlement money from her male boss.

Jen-Jen Gambol, 24, left Hong Kong around the end of August, after entering into a settlement with W. H Tang, her male employer, at the Labour Department.

The status of the Mong Kok police investigation against Tang’s wife remains uncertain now that the helper is back in her home province of Nueva Vizcaya.

Edwina Antonio, a director of Mission for Migrant Workers, told The SUN that Gambol informed her she was going home after she agreed on a settlement with Tang.

The maid had earlier consulted the Mission after the Labour Tribunal adjourned her claim against Tang until Dec 12 pending the result of the criminal investigation of Tang’s wife.

“Mukhang gusto na niya talagang umuwi. Nag-decide na iyon. Sayang nga eh, kasi six days lang siya,” Antonio said.

The Labour Tribunal initially heard on Aug. 11 Gambol’s claim totaling $106,000 against Tang, including compensation for summary dismissal and loss of earning capacity. But the hearing was adjourned until Dec 12 pending the police action on the assault case against Tang’s wife.

Presiding Officer Daniel Tang cautioned the helper before adjourning the hearing that the Tribunal was not the appropriate court for the amount she was claiming from her employer, while her boss said he was going for a settlement.

Police rescued Gambol on June 21 after Mrs Tang allegedly beat her up the previous evening for accidentally damaging the woman’s blouse while ironing it. Officers rescued her and took her to a hospital for a check-up. They arrested Tang’s wife the next day but released her after investigation.

The helper realized fighting her case in court would take time after Presiding Officer Daniel Tang told her the civil claim would have to be put on hold pending the outcome of the criminal investigation.

Gambol, a mother of a 5-year-old boy and a 3-year-old girl, told The SUN on Aug 22 that was considering settling with her boss.

“Sir, ayaw ko na yata ituloy ito,” she said in a Facebook message. “Eh ang tagal pa naman ng hearing. Paano kung maki-settle na lang ako sa amo ko?”

On the same day, she said in another message that it seemed her employer did not want to settle and would instead fight the case.

Gambol elevated the claim to the Tribunal after a failed preliminary meeting at the Labour Department on July 13 when the employer insisted on paying her only $1,900 for a plane ticket to Manila.

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