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Govt warns employers who terminate FDHs with Covid-19 or treat them badly

05 March 2022

By The SUN

Scattered bags of a FDH sacked after testing positive for Covid-19 (photo by Marites Palma)

The Hong Kong government has sternly warned employers that they face severe consequences if they dismiss their foreign domestic helpers after testing positive for Covid-19, or discriminate against them as a result of their infection.

In a statement issued today, the government said it “does not and will not tolerate any employers of  FDHs illegally dismissing FDHs who have suffered from the COVID-19 and in violation of the Employment Ordinance (EO).”

Under the Ordinance, an employer is prohibited from terminating the contract of employment of an employee on his/her paid sickness day, except in cases of summary dismissal due to the latter's serious misconduct.”


Any employer who violates this provision commits an offence and if convicted, faces a maximum fine of $100,000.

On top of this, the government said that an employer who violates any of their obligations under the Labour Ordinance and the Standard Employment Contract amid the pandemic will be prevented from employing an FDH for a certain period, meaning their visa applications for FDHs will be refused.

“Employers are also reminded of the possible violation of the Disability Discrimination Ordinance if they treat their FDHs less favourably (for example, by dismissing them) because the FDHs have been infected with or recovered from Covid-19” said the statement.

Pindutin para sa detalye
The government said it will be vigilant in taking enforcement actions against any violation of the law in collaboration with the relevant Consulates General.

FDHs who test positive for Covid-19 or are regarded as close contacts are assured that they will be given support like all citizens of Hong Kong, including those who should be given priority because they need to isolate outside a home.

In this connection, FDHs who are currently without an employment will be admitted to suitable facilities, with the support and help of relevant consulates, said the government.


Currently, there are about 330,000 FDHs, mainly from the Philippines and Indonesia, who are working in Hong Kong.

“The HKSAR Government and the local community greatly value and appreciate the significant contributions rendered by FDHs in support of families and the local economy,” said the statement.


“We much empathise with their not being able to visit their families back at home because of the ravaging epidemic. The HKSAR Government is committed to continue protecting the employment rights and interests of FDHs in order to maintain Hong Kong as an attractive place for FDHs to work.”

The govt says the number of workers who gather on their days off has dropped 

At the same time, it thanked both employers and FDHs for heeding the government’s advice to stay home as far as possible even on their rest days to reduce the number of people outside, and prevent the spread of the virus.

“Over the recent weekends, we noticed that FDH gatherings in popular spots had been significantly reduced,” said the statement. 

The government assured that it will continue protecting the rights and interests of FDHs in Hong Kong.


"The 5th wave of the Covid-19 epidemic has hit us hard and we could only overcome this major challenge with the full support and co-operation of the community,” said the statement.

The full statement is here:
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