Mission calls for ban on using toilets as FDW quarters

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Photos included in the Mission for Migrant Workers' Report show the living conditions of one helper named "Grace." (PHOTO COURTESY: Mission for Migrant Workers)

A migrant support group called on the Hong Kong government to introduce clearer policies ensuring suitable quarters for foreign domestic workers, including a ban on the use of toilets and kitchens for FDW’s accommodation.

The Mission for Migrant Workers published a report on Wednesday entitled “Between a Toilet Bowl and a Wall,” which documented the living conditions of some domestic workers in the city.

The report includes photographs of sleeping quarters of some migrant workers—including a motor mechanics store, a toilet, and a tent.

In its recommendations, the Mission urged for the ban to be stated in the Standard Employment Contract’s Schedule of Accommodation and Domestic Duties.

The schedule currently cites two examples of what are deemed “unsuitable” living spaces: made-do beds in corridors “with little privacy,” and sharing a room with an adult or teenager of the opposite sex.

The organisation also called for adding kitchens, balconies, stairwells, and illegal outdoor structures in a list of unsuitable accommodations, and urged Hong Kong authorities to consult domestic worker groups and their advocates.

Another recommendation they gave to solve the accommodation issue was to review Hong Kong’s stringent mandatory live-in rule.

“We still profess that live-out arrangements can be an option that should be made available for both the employers and the domestic workers, and should not be criminalised,” the organisation said.

One may view the full report by CLICKING HERE.