Safety rules OK’d for HK foreign workers
Pia Lee-Brago (The Philippine Star) - February 13, 2017 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines – The Hong Kong Labor and Welfare Bureau and the consulates of labor-sending countries, led by the Philippines, have agreed to amend the Standard Employment Contract (SEC) for foreign domestic helpers (FDHs) to ensure the workers’ safety.

The FDHs include about 188,000 Filipinos.

Following months-long consultations since last year, the Hong Kong government agreed to add in the SEC a provision on the cleaning of windows. Both parties believed safety in the workplace must be ensured, and every life protected.

The Philippine Consulate General in Hong Kong led the effort.

To speed up negotiations on the proposed additional safety provision, the Consulate and the Commissioner for Labor worked vigorously on a series of consultations that resulted in the incorporation of an additional safety clause in the new SEC, which the Hong Kong Immigration Department issued on Jan. 1 this year.

The new SEC includes a safety clause on cleaning outward-facing windows. The window being cleaned must be fitted with a grill, which is locked or secured in a manner that prevents the grill from being opened; and that no part of the helper’s body extends beyond the window ledge, except the arms.

By 2018, or after a year of implementation, the new safety measure is expected to eventually protect some 330,000 FDHs in Hong Kong, more than half of them Filipinos.

 

HONG KONG LABOR AND WELFARE BUREAU
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