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Notes of a Former Migrant Worker (based on an interview)



Mitra Wacana

By: Umiasih (CO Kulon Progo)

This will tell the story of what happened to a person that will be referred to as BN. This event occurred in the 1990’s when BN received an offer to work overseas. At that time, BN had just divorced her husband, and had one child. The person offering the job presented it as a lucrative job offer. At first BN wasn’t sure whether or not to take the job, but she hoped that if she took the job she would be able to guarantee a future for her child, so finally she decided to accept the job offer.

The requirements weren’t complicated, the important thing was that BN had an Identity Card. After her preparations were complete, BN departed by bus to Batam. After arriving at her destination, BN was brought to a shelter in a simple house that was surrounded by a wall, like a prison. After approximately six months in that shelter, BN departed to Malaysia to work as a domestic helper.

While working, BN was forbidden from speaking with her work friends. She also received physical violence, such as being slapped and hit by her boss. BN also never received any payment while working. These conditions made BN increasingly determined to escape from Malaysia and return to Indonesia, even though there were many obstacles and risks. Her first attempt failed, BN was found out by her boss and badly beaten.

BN never gave up. On her second escape attempt, BN met with the Indonesian Navy. She hoped they would help her, but instead they beat her and kicked her with their shoes. BN was captured and returned to her boss.

After this, BN felt resigned to her fate. Then four years later she tried to escape again. Together with a friend, BN tied bed sheets together, and used them to escape through the house window. She successfully arrived in the harbour at 2.am. However, her friend failed because she fell in the persons house. BN met with a fisherman who finally helped her to cross using a barge. BN crossed to the base of Pinang.

Upon arrival in Indonesia, BN decided to help the owner of the store where she took shelter. The owner wa named Sri, she was a person from Bantul in Yogyakarta. While living in Sri’s house, BN helped her sell things in the warung. One time Sri’s son came to visit, sith the help of Sri’s son, BN entrusted him with photos for her family at home, because BN had long been away, BN worried that her family would not recognize her. With Sri’s assistance, BN managed to go home and meet with family.

After 10 years back at home, BN received an invitation from Mitra Wacana WRC to join in a routine meeting at the Women’s Learning Centre (P3A). Because of these regular meetings, BN received information about the prevention of human trafficking. Besides that, the P3A is also a place to learn and share experiences. Before becoming a member of the P3A, BN had never before joined in with an organisation like that. Thanks to the regular meetings, BN realised that she had been a victim of human trafficking. Until now, BN still regularly joins in with P3A meetings. According to BN, if she regularly attends the meetings she believes she will learn many new things eg: about gender equality, reproductive help.

In OPSD, participants receive knowledge about the importance of participating in development. Women are able to participate in development, because women actually know more about their needs. For example, girls know the needs of the child, the things that endanger the child and take care of reproductive health. Unlike men, most of them think about their physical needs without paying attention to the psychic.

While joining in with the OPSD, BN received knowledge about including women in village development. For BN, the OPSD becomes a place for village women to learn about gender, village laws, preventing human trafficking and fulfilling women’s rights.

BN feels that she had many valuable experiences here. She has become more confident when mingling with the community and engaging in community deliberations. As an example, in one instance, BN emphasised the importance of educating people about the prevention of human trafficking. Her hope is so that there are no more victims of human trafficking her village.

During the process of OPSD, BN was not satisfied because not many participants from the village government joined the activity. According to BN, if OPSD are attended by many more “important” people from the village, then it will increase the number of people in society that are vocal about preventing human trafficking.

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Sunat Perempuan, Praktik “Budaya” yang Berdampak Negatif pada HKSR



Sumber gambar: BBC

Oleh Wahyu Tanoto

Sunat perempuan, atau yang juga dikenal sebagai Mutilasi Genital Perempuan (FGM), adalah praktik pemotongan atau melukai alat kelamin perempuan secara parsial atau keseluruhan. Praktik ini telah lama menjadi “tradisi” di berbagai negara di dunia, termasuk Indonesia.

Menurut UNICEF, terdapat sekitar 200 juta perempuan dan anak perempuan di dunia yang telah disunat. Indonesia sendiri merupakan salah satu negara dengan prevalensi sunat perempuan tertinggi di dunia, dengan perkiraan jumlah perempuan yang disunat mencapai 4,8 juta orang. Praktek sunat perempuan masih marak dilakukan di Indonesia, baik di pedesaan maupun perkotaan. Hal ini terungkap dalam survei yang dilakukan Badan Pusat Statistik (BPS) pada tahun 2021.

Survei yang dilakukan di 160 kabupaten dan kota di 10 provinsi tersebut melibatkan responden berusia 15 hingga 64 tahun. Hasilnya menunjukkan bahwa 55 persen anak perempuan dari kelompok usia 15-49 tahun yang tinggal bersama orang tua menjalankan praktik sunat perempuan.

Ada berbagai alasan mengapa sunat perempuan masih kerap terjadi di Indonesia, diantaranya yaitu:

  1. Alasan ajaran agama. Praktik sunat perempuan sering dikaitkan dengan ajaran agama tertentu. Namun, perlu ditegaskan bahwa tidak ada ajaran agama yang mewajibkan sunat perempuan.
  2. Alasan budaya. Dalam beberapa budaya, sunat perempuan dianggap sebagai bagian dari tradisi yang telah mengakar. Praktik ini sering kali dianggap sebagai tanda kebersihan, kesucian, dan sebagai bentuk menjaja “kehormatan” perempuan.
  3. Alasan mitos dan kepercayaan. Ada berbagai mitos dan kepercayaan yang melatarbelakangi praktik sunat perempuan. Beberapa mitos tersebut antara lain bahwa sunat perempuan mengontrol hasrat seksual, dan melindungi anak perempuan dari perkosaan.

Sebagaimana dipahami, bahwa praktik sunat perempuan memiliki dampak negatif bagi kesehatan perempuan dan anak perempuan, antara lain:

  1. Nyeri dan perdarahan. Praktik sunat perempuan sering kali dilakukan tanpa anestesi, sehingga dapat menyebabkan rasa sakit dan perdarahan yang parah.
  2. Praktik sunat perempuan dapat meningkatkan risiko infeksi, seperti tetanus, sepsis, dan rentan terpapar virus HIV.
  3. Gangguan fungsi seksual: Sunat perempuan dapat menyebabkan gangguan fungsi seksual, seperti nyeri saat berhubungan seksual, kesulitan mencapai orgasme, dan bahkan ketidaksuburan.
  4. Masalah psikologis. Sunat perempuan dapat menyebabkan masalah psikologis, seperti trauma, depresi, dan kecemasan.

Memang, pemerintah Indonesia telah menerbitkan berbagai kebijakan untuk mencegah dan menghapus praktik sunat perempuan. Misalnya pada 2006, Peraturan Pemerintah Nomor 44 Tahun 2006 yang melarang praktik sunat perempuan. Namun, kebijakan ini kemudian dicabut pada 2010 dengan dikeluarkannya Peraturan Menteri Kesehatan Nomor 13636/MENKES/PER/XI/2010 yang mengatur prosedur sunat perempuan oleh tenaga medis.

Kebijakan kontroversial ini akhirnya menuai protes dari berbagai kalangan, karena dianggap tidak konsisten dengan komitmen Indonesia untuk menghapus praktik sunat perempuan. Pada 2014, pemerintah kembali mengeluarkan kebijakan baru dengan mencabut Peraturan Menteri Kesehatan Nomor 13636/MENKES/PER/XI/2010 Tentang Sunat Perempuan.

Kebijakan-kebijakan tersebut tampaknya sedikit banyak menunjukkan komitmen pemerintah Indonesia untuk menghapus praktik sunat perempuan. Namun, untuk mencapai tujuan tersebut, diperlukan upaya yang kuat dan masif dari berbagai pihak, termasuk pemerintah, masyarakat, dan lembaga-lembaga terkait.

Berikut adalah beberapa hal yang bisa dilakukan untuk menghapus praktik sunat perempuan di Indonesia:

  1. Pemerintah wajib memperkuat regulasi dan penegakan hukum untuk mencegah dan menghapus praktik sunat perempuan.
  2. Pemerintah juga wajib mencabut regulasi atau kebijakan-kebijakan yang bertentangan dengan prinsip Hak Asasi Manusia.
  3. Masyarakat diedukasi tentang bahaya dan dampak negatif praktik sunat perempuan mulai dari ranah individu hingga publik.
  4. Menjalin kolaborasi dengan lembaga-lembaga terkait untuk memberikan dukungan dan pendampingan kepada perempuan dan anak perempuan yang menjadi korban sunat perempuan.

Hemat penulis, dengan kerja sama yang kuat dari berbagai pihak, kebijakan yang jelas dan implementatif serta ketersediaan sumber daya yang komprehensif, praktik sunat perempuan di Indonesia bisa dihapuskan. Akhirnya, perempuan dan anak perempuan terlindungi dari segala bentuk kekerasan.



Komnas Perempuan (2022). Sunat Perempuan

Kementerian Pemberdayaan Perempuan dan Perlindungan Anak Republik Indonesia (2020). Hapuskan Praktek Berbahaya Sunat bagi Perempuan dan Anak Perempuan Karena Pelanggaran Hak

UNICEF (2022). Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting

WHO (2022) Female Genital Mutilation

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