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  • When Yaya is a Relative

    When you hire a relative as your child's Yaya, should she be treated differently from the other staffers?
    by Tisha C. Bautista .
  • relativeSometimes, it may happen that your child’s caregiver is also a relative of the family. In these instances, how should one handle certain sensitivities? If you are considering this option, it would be wise to think of the following:

    1) What is the purpose of having your relative be the yaya of your child? Is it a favor you are asking of her as a consequence of your need? Or is it a way for you to help her out because of her personal needs --- financial or otherwise? Once this becomes clear to you, it will set the tone of the relationship and will help you identify possible areas of sensitivity.

    2) Logistics/arrangements: When Yaya is your relative, you have to be all the more clear about circumstances regarding her employment…

    • Board/Lodging: You must decide where yaya will be sleeping as well as where she will put her belongings. Will she have a separate room or stay with other staffers? Will she sleep with her “alaga” in her/his room?
    • Food: Being a relative, will you opt to have Yaya eat at the table with the rest of the family or not? Will she stay with the rest of the household staff?
    • Uniform: Wearing a uniform daily may not appeal to all people. As such, you must decide if you want Yaya to wear a uniform and if so, will it be different from her other co-workers’?
    • Titles: How would you like your children to address your yaya? ----“tita”, “ate”, etc? How should your other staff members address her?
    • Compensation Package: As previously mentioned, once a relative is asked to be the caregiver of your child, it could be for various reasons.  Should the reason be monetary, all the parameters of compensation --- salaries, benefits, SSS, Philhealth etc. must be addressed and decided upon.
    • Vacation/Days-off: Time away from your child also needs to be addressed. Being related, you may want to give her more consideration and allow more time to rest and rejuvenate.
    • Dealings with other household staff: The primary concern would be to define Yaya’s role to the rest of your staff. Clarify how she is “different” and how she is the “same”…. Which house rules are applicable to her and which ones are not. It is of utmost importance to ensure that there is no miscommunication regarding this matter; otherwise, instead of improving the household situation, getting a yaya who is a relative may be detrimental to the group as a whole.


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