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Labour Dept calls on FDHs not to eat together, or just stay at home on day-off

04 December 2020

By The SUN

LD staff and the police remind Filipino DHs about the gathering ban

The Labour Department has issued a new advisory calling on foreign domestic helpers to avoid eating together, and if possible, to just rest at home on their day-off.

The call was made in a statement published in the government news website this evening, Dec. 4, along with a reminder on the higher penalties for violations of the gathering restrictions.

"We remind FDHs to observe and comply with the regulations and appeal to them to avoid meal gatherings, food sharing and other social activities on their rest days and stay at home for rest as far as possible to safeguard their personal health,” said the statement.

Pindutin para sa detalye

It also called on employers and workers to try to arrange rest days on a weekday instead of during the weekend, when most migrant workers gather together for their weekly holiday.

At the same time, employers were warned that it is illegal for them to make their domestic helpers work during their day-off. If they do, they can be prosecuted, and upon conviction, fined a maximum of $50,000.

The advisory also reminded employers that if they compel their helper to work on a rest day, they must substitute another rest day for the FDH within 30 days after the original rest day. They must also notify their helper of the arrangement within 48 hours after he/she is required to work.

Pindutin para sa detalye

The statement was meant to primarily remind FDHs and employers about the increased penalty for violators of gathering rules. From the current $2,000, the fixed penalty will go up to $5,000 starting next Friday, Dec 11.

The fixed penalty is imposed outright on those found violating stricter gathering rules.

Currently, no more than two people could gather in public; or eat together in a restaurant. Everyone is also required to wear a mask while in a public place, indoor or outdoor, including on public transportation and in shopping malls.

37 FDHs have been issued fixed penalty tickets so far for violating gathering rules

So far, said the statement, a total of 37 FDHs have been charged with the fixed penalty for violating Cap 599G, or the gathering regulation.

Call now!

“The Government will continue to conduct mobile broadcast at popular FDH gathering places across the territory to call upon FDHs to comply with the latest requirements,” said the statement.

A call was also made for FDWs who are staying in boarding houses while waiting to move in with new employers to take the free Covid-19 test provided by the Labour Department until Dec 24.

CALL US!

Those who need to stay in the boarding facilities for an extended period are advised to “retake the test as appropriate, especially before joining the new employer’s family.”

Specimen collection packs for FDHs are available at a temporary distribution/collection point at the Wan Chai Sports Ground.

Tunghayan ang isa na namang kwentong Dream Love

Employment agencies are advised to assist the workers in taking the test, and to ensure that they do not stay in crowded boarding facilities so they remain healthy prior to joining their new employers.

FDWs or employers with enquiries about the testing service may call the dedicated hotline, 2157 9537 (manned by 1823), by email to fdh-enquiry@labour.gov.hk or through the online form on the dedicated portal (www.fdh.labour.gov.hk). 

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