A 37-year-old Indonesian maid who had worked in Hong Kong for 13 years was sacked and abused last year for falling pregnant, a charity reports.
Anisa had worked for then-employer for three years when, in April 2016, she disclosed that she was pregnant and was sacked.
According to Reuters, she went to the charity organization Pathfinders Hong Kong for help and, after some negotiation, the employer re-hired her. However, she subsequently reported that she was verbally abused and bullied by the employer.
Anisa said her employer called her a dog and treated her with disdain. She was asked to carry four heavy bags of rice when she was seven months pregnant. She was sacked, again, in October 2016, when her daughter was born.
According to Hong Kong’s Employment Ordinance in the city, domestic workers are entitled to 10 weeks of paid maternity leave if they have worked for an employer for 40 weeks or more. An employer who fires a domestic worker on account of her becoming pregnant is liable to a fine of HK$100,000.
Anisa and her daughter have been granted a temporary permit to stay in Hong Kong by the Immigration Department. Her partner is an asylum seeker in the city.
As the screening process to allow either parent to stay in Hong Kong could take several years, commentators have questioned whether Anisa’s daughter should be granted the right of abode since she was born in the city.
Jessica Chow, co-director of PathFinders, which helps domestic workers through legal aid, employment advice, abortion referrals and maternity classes, told HK01.com that over the past nine years, no more than 10 children born to domestic workers had been given the right of abode in Hong Kong.