HK Magazine Archive

Why Did the EOC Ignore This Pregnant Woman Bullied at Work?

Everyone's experienced some form of discrimination in the workplace, whether it be about gender and sex, racism or just plain old favoritism. One lady claimed she was discriminated simply for being pregnant and sued for it, too.

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 18 November, 2015, 2:39pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 19 October, 2016, 4:53pm

Siu Kam-ying was with child one month after joining her former employer, Coe International. In response, her boss gave her a broken chair to sit on, warned her colleagues against speaking with her and required her to pick up the phone within three rings—which her colleagues were not required to do.

She quit and brought the case to the Equal Opportunities Commission last year, but the EOC turned down the case because she was not fired. So she went to the Diocesan Pastoral Centre for Workers instead, and filed for $271,000 from the company.

The EOC still did not get involved even when invited by the court.

In the end, Coe International settled with $20,000 and a letter of apology outside of court this week. Siu said that she sued for the principle, not the money, especially because EOC's rejection meant that many similar cases would be rejected, and that victims would also be discouraged to contact the EOC.

We asked our Twitter followers if they thought the HKSAR government does enough to promote gender equality in the workplace.

86% of respondents said no.

What have you experienced? Do you think the settlement was fair?

Share with us in the comments below or on Facebook.