Domestic Workers Hong Kong Politics & Protest

In Pictures: Protesters rally for equality in Hong Kong to celebrate Int’l Women’s Day

Several groups held protests at various locations across Hong Kong on Tuesday to mark the occasion of International Women’s Day.

Activist group Socialist Action marched to Central Government Offices, demanding an end to gender inequality.

intl women's day protest

Photo: Dan Garrett.

“Women only make up 30 percent of management roles in corporations and the government… 85 percent of those picking up trash on the streets are women and the overall state of poverty is more serious for women than it is for men,” the group said on Facebook.

intl women's day protest

Photo: Dan Garrett.

“Increase childcare services and implement subsidies for family caregivers,” one of the placards read.

intl women's day protest

Photo: Dan Garrett.

“Stand together in resistance, fight sexual discrimination, give me back universal pension scheme,” another sign read.

intl women's day protest

Photo: Dan Garrett.

Pro-democracy political party the League of Social Democrats were also seen at the protests, led by lawmaker “Long Hair” Leung Kwok-hung.

domestic worker protest

Photo: Adrian Lo.

On Sunday, around 300 Indonesian, Filipino and Nepalese domestic workers took part in a rally in Causeway Bay.

domestic worker protest

Photo: Adrian Lo.

Protesters gave solidarity speeches and performances, then marched from Patterson Street to the Indonesian Consulate.

domestic worker protest

Photo: Adrian Lo.

They demanded that the government abolish the mandatory live-in policy, which they say exposes domestic workers to exploitation and abuse, such as verbal and sexual assault.

domestic worker protest

Photo: Adrian Lo.

They also condemned the “two-week rule”, which forces domestic workers to seek new employers within two weeks of the termination of their contract.

domestic worker protest

Photo: Loryjean Yungco.

At the Women’s Commission International Women’s Day 2016 reception, Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying said: “We are seeking to better support working women by enhancing child care centre services, and promoting family-friendly employment practices. The Social Welfare Department is proactively identifying suitable premises for building new child care centres.”

Leung also said that a new law has been passed in the Legislative Council last year, granting three days’ paid paternity leave to employees.

“We also aim to progressively increase the ratio for appointing women to government advisory and statutory bodies from 30% to 35%.”

Correction 17:52: A previous version of this article stated that the domestic workers took part in a protest on Tuesday. The event in fact took place on Sunday.

In Pictures: Protesters rally for equality in Hong Kong to celebrate Int'l Women's Day