Foreign domestic workers in Hong Kong

Foreign domestic workers in Hong Kong

Foreign domestic workers make up around 3 per cent of the Hong Kong population. In 2013, there were some 320,000 foreign domestic helpers in Hong Kong, of which 50 per cent were from the Philippines, 47 per cent from Indonesia, and the rest from Thailand, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Hong Kong law states that such workers must reside with their employers. Their wages are subject to a statutory minimum of HK$4,010 per month from September 30 last year. There have been several high-profile court cases in which domestic workers have alleged torture and abuse at the hands of their employers. According to a 2013 report by Amnesty International, Indonesian migrant domestic workers are at risk of serious human and labour rights violations in Hong Kong.

Hong Kong employer cleared of cutting Indonesian maid’s finger

Defendant Ngan Suk-wai was cleared of wounding Anis Andriyani with intent. Photos: David Wong, K.Y. Cheng

An emotional employer spoke out against violence on domestic workers on Thursday - minutes after she was acquitted of cutting her helper's finger.

Friday, 13 February, 2015, 3:54am 3 comments

Non-profit agency places first 49 domestic helpers in Hong Kong

Non-profit agency places first 49 domestic helpers in Hong Kong

Asia's first not-for-profit domestic helpers recruitment agency has placed 49 maids with employers in Hong Kong since embarking on its no-placement-fee "revolution" last September, one of its founders said.

12 Feb 2015 - 5:24am 3 comments

Language and cultural barriers leave Hong Kong's Indonesian maids 'more vulnerable to abuse'

Indonesian domestic workers tend to be less well educated than their Filipino peers. Photo: AFP

Language barriers and cultural differences may partly explain why Indonesian domestic helpers have been caught up in three of the city's most horrific abuse cases over the past 13 years.

12 Feb 2015 - 8:51am 15 comments

Hong Kong domestic helpers arrested in crackdown on ‘live-out’ maids

Rights groups campaign for better conditions for domestic helpers. Photo: K.Y. Cheng

Four foreign domestic helpers were arrested in dawn raids yesterday morning on suspicion of breaking immigration laws by not living in their employers’ homes.

29 Jan 2015 - 4:43pm 28 comments

Rights group says 6.5pc of foreign domestic helpers sexually harassed

77pc of helpers who said they were sexually harassed said they took action when it happened. Photo: Nora Tam

Some 6.5 per cent of foreign domestic helpers in Hong Kong say they have been sexually harassed, the equality watchdog has found.

28 Nov 2014 - 6:26pm 1 comment

Maids' wages go up by HK$100, but no one's happy

Maids' wages go up by HK$100 from today - that's per month and only for those signing new contracts. Photo: David Wong

Maids' wages go up by HK$100 from today - that's per month and only for those signing new contracts.

1 Oct 2014 - 3:46am 2 comments

Ex-civil servant who poured boiling water on maid avoids jail due to medical condition

Au Wai-chun (left) was convicted last month of occasioning actual bodily harm to Begum Raksona (right). Photo: David Wong

A former civil servant convicted of pouring hot water on her Bangladeshi helper was told she had undermined the city's reputation as she was given a suspended six-month jail sentence.

23 Sep 2014 - 9:50am

Hong Kong's domestic helpers 'should be paid HK$4,500 a month'

Eman Villanueva says Hong Kong attracts fewer foreign workers. Photo: K.Y. Cheng

Domestic helpers in the city are treated as "cheap labour" and should get a wage increase or pay parity with Hongkongers on the minimum wage, the workers' representatives say.

10 Sep 2014 - 5:18pm 62 comments

Ex-civil servant found guilty of scalding maid with boiling water

Au Wai-chun will be sentenced later this month. Photo: David Wong

A former civil servant has been convicted of pouring scalding hot water over a Bangladeshi maid who suffered burns on her chest.

2 Sep 2014 - 7:28am

Hong Kong couple jailed for torturing Indonesian helper fail in appeal bid

Tai Chi-wai (left) and his wife Catherine Au were convicted in September last year. Photos: Sam Tsang

A Hong Kong couple convicted of torturing their Indonesian helper for two years with hot irons and bicycle chains have failed in a bid to appeal the verdict.

28 Aug 2014 - 3:26am

Former civil servant on trial for pouring hot water on Bangladeshi maid

Au Wai-chun enters court in a wheelchair, with bandaged wrists. Photo: Edward Wong

A former civil servant allegedly poured hot water on a Bangladeshi maid, causing her to suffer burns to her chest, the District Court heard.

18 Jul 2014 - 7:51am

Worldwide petition collects 103,000 signatures to end Hong Kong helper abuse

Domestic helpers display posters of alleged abuse victim Erwiana Sulistyaningsih as the petition is handed in at Tamar. Photo: Edward Wong

Human rights groups have collected 103,307 signatures from more than 160 countries calling on the Hong Kong government to take immediate steps to stop the abuse of foreign domestic workers.

28 Apr 2014 - 9:23am 3 comments

Breaking the chains of human trafficking in Hong Kong

Chain reaction

We are at a crossroads. Human trafficking is a human rights violation that cuts across different echelons of society and has a devastating impact not only on its victims but also on the societies where it exists.

10 Apr 2014 - 5:49am 4 comments

Domestic helpers forced to pay agencies '20 times legal rate'

Indonesian domestic workers Fajar Aryani (2nd right) and Yustina (4th left) recall how recruitment agencies did not help them when they were in trouble.

Nearly half of foreign domestic helpers have paid their job agencies more than Hong Kong laws allow, in some cases overpaying by more than 20 times the standard rate, a study shows.

7 Apr 2014 - 10:59am 3 comments

Erwiana to return to Hong Kong to assist in assault case against former employer

Erwiana to return to Hong Kong to assist in assault case against former employer

Erwiana Sulistyaningsih, the domestic helper allegedly abused by her employer, will return to Hong Kong next week to help with evidence for the woman's trial.

4 Apr 2014 - 12:11pm