A delegation from 11 non-governmental organizations in Hong Kong is taking a dim view of de facto segregation of ethnic minority students in Hong Kong schools. Next week, they will make a report on the matter to the United Nations.
One of the participating NGOs, Unison Hong Kong, said that 60% of all ethnic minority students in Hong Kong are placed in only 30 of the city’s 870 schools, Apple Daily reported.
Meanwhile, teachers at these schools are not equipped to teach Chinese as a second language, making it difficult for non-ethnic students to learn the language. The repercussions of this make it hard for students to effectively integrate into Hong Kong society, and reduces their chances of finding higher-paid jobs.
According to government figures, 584,383 people from ethnic minorities were living in Hong Kong in 2016, accounting for 8% of the population. Excluding foreign domestic workers, ethnic minorities account for 3.6% or 263,593 of the city’s population.
Director of Hong Kong Human Rights Monitor Law Yuk-kai said the delegation will also raise awareness on other issues to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. Topics to be covered will include racial discrimination, human trafficking, protecting the rights of migrant workers and screening asylum seekers and refugees.
The UN committee, made up of human rights experts, will hold hearings on August 10 and 13 to assess how Hong Kong has implemented provisions in the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination.
The delegation heading to the UN comprises representatives from organizations including HK Human Rights Monitor, Hong Kong Unison, Mission for Migrant Workers and the Centre for Comparative and Public Law of the University of Hong Kong.