I don’t know about Filippino women, but Portuguese women have a reputation for being very clean and extraordinarily good housekeepers. Being half Portuguese and having settled randomly in a neighborhood with lots of Portuguese immigrants living in it, I can assure you that the stereotype is that we are a very hardworking people.
Stereotypes run rampant with any ethnicity. Portuguese people have to deal with people assuming they live on soup and drink a lot of moonshine they make in a bathtub. I don’t see why people shouldn’t capitalize on positive sterotypes when they are affected by negative ones as well. Especially for immigrants who aren’t trained for much else.
But whether there should or shouldn’t be training, there isn’t. Immigrants have to take whatever kinds of jobs they can get. In this case, women do housecleaning, and men typically do unskilled labor.
It’s the way things are expected to be, at least in Portuguese familes. My grandfather worked as a smelter (which killed him, BTW), my mom is an administrative assistant, and I am an engineer. Immigrants typically come to America to give their children a better chance at life. They do the jobs nobody wants so that their kids can get a job that isn’t backbreaking and menial.
As far as pushing stereotypes go, in theory, I agree with you. But what else does somebody with little command of the English language or American society have to recommend them for a job cleaning houses?
One small thing about Portuguese culture - we (generic we, not me in particular. I’m only a half-breed, you see ) believe stereotypes are true, for better or (usually) worse. Not those of us who have been Americanized, but I’ll tell you that I have never met a group of people as a whole more racist than the Portuguese. Not necessarily in the big, violent ways, though. More in the tightening-grip-on-purse, keeping-an-eye-on-potential-shoplifter kind of way.
These people who staple or tape or nail “YARD SALE” signs all over the goddam neighborhood and NEVER TAKE THEM DOWN. Half of them don’t have dates on them; there’s been a sign on one phone pole saying, “Yard sale this Saturday!” for three months now.
You put it up? You take it down. If I had a car and a lot more time, I’d rip 'em down and shove them in the mailboxes of the offenders (since their addresses are on them, they’d be easy to find!).
Show up on Saturday and stand in their front yard.
When they ask what you’re doing there, tell them that they advertised a yard sale on Saturday in flyers still up on poles, and you expect them to have a yard sale, by damn, or you’ll send their name in to the Attorney General for false advertising!