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This page is updated on 2006-07-27 12:04
Christian Service News
Issue 46 (January 2005)
Opinion Feedback
Legislation Against Racial Discrimination

We welcome the government's proposal to legislate against racial discrimination. However, this should take a more proactive rather than a remedial approach. Relevant legislations should enhance social inclusion of ethnic minorities in Hong Kong. To achieve this, additional resources have to be allocated to various policy areas.

A culture of social inclusion for all ethnic minorities need to be cultivated so as to change the mindset of the Hong Kong people to perceive ethnic minorities as a family and Hong Kong as a home for all races. Mutual respect should be one of the major themes to advocate.

Lip service alone is not enough. The government should provide supportive services to students of ethnic minorities and adequate opportunities for them to further their studies. Resources should be allocated to schools so that they can employ additional teaching assistants or services to enhance the learning of these students.

In order to ensure that no Hong Kong citizen would be treated with second-class public services, the government should organise translation courses for ethnic minority school graduates. This will result in a win-win situation where more jobs can be created for ethnic minorities and at the same time adequate and proper services will be provided to them.

Tax allowances should be offered to employers who recruit a particular number of ethnic minorities who are qualified for the jobs.

Free legal consultation and advice should be provided to small medium enterprises to help them examine whether their hiring practices contravene with the law and to help them make remedial measures if necessary.

The governing authority set up to implement the Racial Discrimination Ordinance should not only enforce the ordinance but also investigate proactively any cases that may breach it. Racial discrimination occurs either intentionally or out of ignorance. The legislation should take into consideration obviously offensive forms of language expressions or body language.

Ethnic minorities should be facilitated in political participation. Interpreters could be recruited to assist in voter registration and relevant educational activities. The government should also consider appointing more people from ethnic minority groups into existing and new consultative bodies.

In addition, the government can launch its web site in various languages. This will certainly help to reduce the information gap of the ethnic minorities from the mainstream society.

Lastly, efforts should be made by the government to enhance the social inclusion of people from Mainland China into the Hong Kong society.

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