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Higher wages and better rights demanded on Labour Day

HONG KONG  (Mabuhay) : Migrant workers took to the streets on May 1, International Labour Day, to call for higher wages and improvement of rights.

Rallies were conducted outside the Philippine consulate general in Admiralty as well as Indonesian consulate general in Causeway Bay. 

Gathering in Victoria Park with the local workers, around 1,200 migrant workers under the banner of the Asian Migrants Coordinating Body, made up of people from Indonesia, Thailand, Nepal, Sri Lanka and The Philippines, started to walk from Victoria Park, in Causeway Bay, to the Central Government Offices, in Tamar, at around 2.00pm.

Dolores Balladares of the Asian Migrant Coordinating Body pointed out that slavery, discrimination, excessive agency fees and government fees are part of the problems migrant workers are facing.

“What makes the situation worse,” she said, “is that the Hong Kong government has turned a blind eye to the plight of foreign domestic workers and is unwilling to introduce any reforms to the anti-migrant policies.” She said even after repeated recommendations from the migrant communities, non-government organisations and international rights organisations, the government has rejected the proposal to scrap the two weeks rule and the mandatory live-in arrangements.

 

 Migrant workers in the rally also demanded a monthly wage of $4,500, which they believe can better catch up with inflation.