另外， 如社會上有人有額外的的口罩，消毒劑的口罩、消毒劑、異丙醇（按體積計至少含酒精70％）和抗菌洗手液，我們希望在此呼籲香港人捐贈任何數量予本中心。 我們將分發給白恩逢女移民工庇護中心（或名白恩逢之家），一所為陷入困境的女性移民住宿的庇護中心，以及其他因僱主未能提供口罩等的工人。捐贈者可在辦公時間內致電中心電話（25228264），或在辦公時間外致電白恩逢之家熱線（27213119）。中心地址位於中環花園道4-8號聖公會聖約翰座堂。
MFMW urges Hong Kong society to include Migrant Domestic Workers in the fight against new virus
The Mission For Migrant Workers of St. John’s Cathedral, a Hong Kong non-governmental organization in the service of migrant workers since 1981, believes that migrant domestic workers should not be left out in pursuit of good public health.
With two new cases confirmed yesterday, it took the total number of cases in Hong Kong to 17. The recent novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV)cases were suspected to have been transmitted locally. A vulnerable section of society, migrant domestic workers seem to be neglected especially when the Hong Kong Labour Department suggested migrant domestic workers avoid taking their day off every week. This has prompted some employers in imposing this as a rule that the workers must follow. Many of them since last week, were not allowed to enjoy their rest day. Unfortunately, we also noticed that some of the workers were being terminated from the contract or being told to shorten their stay at home on working days, due to the employers’ fear of getting sick from their domestic worker, who has shown no symptoms at all.
As part of Hong Kong society, we understand that the uncertainty of the recent novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) drives anxiety and fear. However, we appeal to the Hong Kong society and all employers to show their care also for our caregivers, our migrant domestic workers, in this challenging time. We believe that forgoing the health concerns of one sector means failure of the whole Hong Kong society.
Each migrant domestic worker is part of a household. As integral part of Hong Kong society, MDWs should be given equal care. We believe that to prevent the virus from spreading, everyone including migrant domestic workers should have access to clean surgical masks, healthy food, and sanitizers, and should get enough rest. However, it is disappointing that there are cases wherein MDWs are not provided surgical masks and sanitizers. Some are even provided with no masks to the market.
We understand that some employers may be unable to provide sufficient number of surgical masks, as well as sanitizers to migrant domestic workers. We would like to encourage employers to work with us in appealing to the Hong Kong authorities to ensure that migrant domestic workers are provided such.
With what is happening in the city, MDWs are affected not less than any other people in Hong Kong. There are reports of distraught Filipino domestic workers unable to return to Hong Kong due to the hastily declared travel ban in the Philippines. A Filipino domestic worker placed in quarantine after her employers’ relatives from Wuhan confirm being infected. Apart from having difficulties to return, MDWs may experience difficulties taking their annual leave as the compulsory 14-day quarantine is implemented. We therefore appeal employers to exercise utmost empathy in light of the recent outbreak of virus, as well as the travel ban in the Philippines.
To ensure everyone receives the same level of care and protection from the virus is means better protection of the whole household, as well as the whole society. Therefore, what must be done is to enable migrant domestic workers to take preventive measures, such as properly wearing masks and sanitizing hands, maintaining good health, and avoiding crowded areas.
Regarding situations mentioned which Migrant Domestic Workers encountering, the MFMW is urging the Hong Kong government:
1. To ensure Migrant Domestic Workers have access to surgical masks, as well as sanitizers;
2. To act on the shortage of surgical masks, as well as sanitizers in the market;
3. To assist migrant domestic workers who experience difficulties in getting back to Hong Kong due to cancellation of flights;
4. To ensure migrant domestic workers will not be discriminated, isolated, and excluded in the fight against the new virus; and
5. To ensure MDWs are not forced to work at employers home/are entitled to rest days.
The Mission would also like to appeal to Hong Kong people to donate any amount of surgical masks, sanitizers, isopropyl alcohol (at least 70% alcohol by volume), and antibacterial liquid hand soap. These will be distributed to the Bethune House Migrant Women’s Refuge, a shelter for distressed women migrants, and other MDWs whose employers are incapable of providing for them. Interested parties can call us during office hours at the Mission’s number (2522 8264) or the Bethune House hotline after office hours (27213119). Drop off point is at the Mission For Migrant Workers centre (St. John’s Cathedral, 4-8 Garden Road, Central).
We need to look out for each other during a crisis. Let us all strive to be the light in these times.
Video of the International Migrants Alliance press conference on response to the Labour Department’s announcement
International Migrants Alliance (國際移民聯盟):
Jaringan Buruh Migran Indonesia (印尼移工網絡)