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Filipino migrants call for $5,894 minimum salary at May Day rally

01 May 2019

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Migrant workers at May Day rally: 'We are not slaves'


Filipino migrant workers have called for a new minimum allowable wage of $5,894 for all foreign domestic helpers in Hong Kong in today’s rally held to mark International Labor Day.
According to the Asian Migrants Coordinating Body (AMCB) which led the biggest contingent of foreign domestic workers at the rally, the increase in the salary is in line with an Oxfam study on what constitutes a living wage.

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The big AMCB contingent
 The group says the current minimum wage of $4,520 per month translates to only $9 per hour for a 16-hour work day, and $12 for those who work for 12 hours each day. That’s a far cry from the $54.7 hourly rate recommended by the Oxfam study.

“A living wage is a fight of all workers in Hong Kong who endure slave wage level.
For migrants who are mostly domestic workers, the struggle to pull up the minimum allowable wage to a living wage is a constant struggle,” said AMCB in a statement.

Apart from an increase in their monthly salary, the protesting migrant workers also reiterated calls for:
*an 11-hour uninterrupted rest plus meal breaks
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Self-made posters list migrants' deplorable work conditions
*a clear stipulation in their work contracts on what constitutes unsuitable accommodations, an end to illegal collection and overcharging, passage of a comprehens;

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* legislating a comprehensive anti-trafficking law, and;
* abolition of all “discriminatory immigration policies” such as the “two-week rule”, mandatory live-in policy, denial of visa to suspected “job-hoppers” and ban on Nepalese workers


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The migrants said they stand solidly behind local workers in fighting for better pay and working conditions, and deplore efforts, “fanned by government inaction” to drive a wedge between them.

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