Homeless domestic workers after Covid-19 infection

At least a dozen foreign domestic workers who tested positive for Covid-19 remained on the streets after their employers refused to let them stay at home, according to concern groups.

With infections increasing daily, many Covid-19 patients with mild symptoms cannot be hospitalized as public hospitals and community isolation centers are operating beyond capacity. Patients are advised to stay home for quarantine.

A spokesman for the Mission for Migrant Workers said at least 12 helpers who tested positive for the test have been turned away from their employers’ homes in the past two or three days. They had to sleep rough or spend the night in hospital emergency departments without food or supplies.

Seven of them were referred to temporary accommodation and one was admitted to hospital.

The spokesperson said the fifth wave of the Covid-19 outbreak is hitting vulnerable groups hard, including foreign domestic helpers.

“Some assistants are also ineligible for public health services after being made redundant.

The organization said it would continue to provide food and medical aid, particularly rapid test kits, to helpers in need.

The Hong Kong Federation of Asian Domestic Workers Unions also said it received a request for help from a Filipina domestic helper, saying she was supposed to start working for a new employer, but her visa application was denied. rejected by the Department of Immigration.

She headed to a community testing center to be tested – a condition for her to board a flight out of Hong Kong.

However, she tested positive preliminarily and the center asked her to quarantine for four days at home as she was asymptomatic. She had to turn to the union since she had no accommodation.

The federation said assistants had been unreasonably fired because of Covid, calling on authorities to address the issue.

Additionally, the union said it has sent a letter to the immigration department urging it to end unreasonable visa denials given the city’s current outbreak.

He also hopes authorities can communicate, coordinate and cooperate with consulates to protect foreign domestic workers.

Labor and Welfare Secretary Chi-kwong said in a radio broadcast on Saturday that the number of foreign domestic workers in Hong Kong had dropped by 70,000 since the start of the pandemic.

Flights to Hong Kong from the Philippines and Indonesia have often been banned due to local outbreaks.

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