A Filipino domestic worker in Hong Kong is in police custody after allegedly abusing the two-year-old son of her employer. The boy’s father found swelling on the child’s cheeks and bruises on his limbs.
The furious father then checked footage from his home security cameras, which captured the maid slapping the child and battering his legs in their home in Kai Tak, Kowloon Bay.
The worker, 40, denied any wrongdoing when questioned but was arrested and charged with ill-treatment or neglect of a child after her employer contacted police, the Sing Tao Daily reported.
The boy was sent to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital for an examination which reportedly showed no serious injuries. The employer suspected the maid had smacked his son multiple times as swelling and bruises appeared repeatedly on his son’s face and legs.
Employers should inform workers from day one that any form of physical punishment or violence to an infant or child, either slapping or punching, is illegal and may entail jail sentences. Corporal punishment as a way of educating and disciplining a child is not uncommon in the countries where most domestic workers hail from.
Child abuse by a caretaker typically occurs when the employer-worker relationship is strained. Two years ago, a 32-year-old Filipino worker was jailed for two and a half months after a year-long police investigation for assaulting a four-year-old boy five times, causing nose bleeds and other injuries.