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Dare we treat foreign domestic workers as brothers and sisters?

HONG KONG (Mabuhay) : With the increase in the number of dual breadwinner families in Hong Kong, the demand for foreign domestic workers is on the rise.

Presently, there are well over 200,000 families employing foreign domestic workers, with Indonesians at 140,000 just outnumbering Filipinos by around 10,000.

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Migrant workers flare at steep hike in PhilHealth premiums


HONG KONG (Mabuhay) : More than 100 people rallied in Harcourt Garden before walking to the offices of the Philippine Consulate General to Hong Kong in Admiralty on January 15 to protest against the 160 per cent increase in premiums proposed by Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth).

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Differing mindsets explain varied flavours of workplaces in Malaysia and Hong Kong

HONG KONG (Mabuhay) : The findings of a study released on December 18 to mark International Migrants Day show that of 260 employers of foreign domestic workers in Hong Kong interviewed 82.2 per cent are satisfied with work performance, but only 43 per cent of them said that they are aware of the labour laws that govern their employment.

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Amid violence workers told to leave Syria

MANILA (UCAN) : The Philippine government has appealed to more than 4,000 Filipinos in Syria to return home amid reports of escalating violence there.

Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda issued the appeal on January 3 after receiving reports that many Filipinos are still refusing to leave despite several warnings.

“We would like to ask the Filipinos in Syria—whether they are documented or undocumented—to heed our appeal,” he said.

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Indonesia warns couples on family separation for work

LAHURUS (UCAN) : While female migrant workers in Hong Kong may worry about what their husbands are up to during their absence, Father Leonardus Edel Asuk, from the Commission for the Family, said that in the diocese of Atambua in Indonesia, the boot is often on the other foot.

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Holy See joins International Organisation for Migration

VATICAN ( : The Holy See has become a full member of the International Organisation for Migration, an intergovernmental body founded in 1951. It joins 132 member states and 97 states and organisations that have observer status.

Pope Benedict XVI mentioned the 16th anniversary of the organisation following his December 4 Angelus address and entrusted to the Lord those forced to leave their countries.

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Workers repatriated from Lebanon before holidays

MANILA (UCAN) : Twenty-three Filipino workers were repatriated from Lebanon in time for the Christmas holidays.

The Department of Foreign Affairs said most of the workers, including one child, were illegally recruited in violation of a ban on overseas workers in Lebanon but the Philippine embassy and the Philippine Overseas Labour Office in Beirut arranged the repatriation on December 24 and paid for their flights.

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A blessing for
people on the move at Christmas

VATICAN ( : The Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People has issued a Christmas message to all people on the move.

The best wishes for a blessed Christmas are addressed to all people, who for the sake of seeking their livelihoods, are either working in a foreign country away from their families or in itinerant industries, like seafaring.

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Dublin council votes for migrants’ rights

DUBLIN (Mabuhay) : A moratorium on undocumented workers was voted for by the city council of Dublin, Ireland,  on December 6.

A motion introduced by councillor, Rebecca Moynihan, to support the introduction for what
is being termed the Earned Regularisation Scheme was passed unanimously at a meeting in the town hall.

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Migrants lose 41 working destinations

MANILA (AsiaNews) : The Philippine government has banned the deployment of migrant labour to 41 countries, including the politically risky like Afghanistan, Libya and the Sudan, as well as trading partners like India and Cambodia, where migrant labour is often exploited.

The ban has got the thumbs down from some Filipino political leaders, as well as getting complaints from countries on the list. India is one of the major trading partners of The Philippines, worth a billion American dollars a year.