Emergency fund to provide welfare after death, injury An emergency welfare fund has been established to help injured construction workers and the families of those killed on the job. The Hong Kong Construction Industry Employees General Union yesterday announced the fund had been set up with $200,000 donated by the Housing Society. Union chairman Choi Chun-wa said the money would help kick-start the emergency relief fund, but more donations would be needed. 'We hope the industry and society at large will donate to support the workers,' he said. Although the union has yet to set guidelines on how much victims will receive, payouts will initially be quite small, said Mr Choi. 'It is emergency aid - probably around $2,000 for deaths and between $500 to $1,000 for injuries, for now,' he said. 'But the amount may increase as the fund increases in size. We aren't aiming to support the workers and the families - we just want to show concern and help them until their insurance claims are processed.' Every year, 3,000 to 4,000 construction workers sustain injuries. This year, at least 10 have died in work-related accidents, while 17 died in 2004 and 25 died in 2003. The Housing Society has re-released a set of work-safety videos that will be distributed throughout the construction industry. 'We started giving out the free videos in 2001 to elevate the standard of the industry,' said David Lee Tsung-hei, society chairman. In return for the videos, the society will ask firms involved in the construction industry for voluntary donations to the welfare fund. Under local legislation, employers are required to take out insurance for construction workers, but it often takes at least a few weeks to process claims. The Social Welfare Department and other charitable organisations also offer emergency aid to injured workers, and bereaved families in the event of death in the workplace.