Labor Attaché Jalilo dela Torre has asked Manila’s permission to stop processing contracts of Filipino domestic workers in Hong Kong if they are required to clean windows from the outside.
Dela Torre said he sent a memo to Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III last month to ask for “clearance” on his plan to stop verifying FDH contracts unless these have a categorical “exception” stating that the worker would not be cleaning windows from the outside.
Bello is expected to visit Hong Kong in the second week of this month.
“I’ve suggested to the Secretary—nagmemo ako—na hindi na namin iveverify ang contracts pag walang exception to the cleaning duties,” Dela Torre said in an interview.
“Ino-oppose ng mga agencies yan. So, I’ve asked the Secretary for clearance na hindi na namin iveverify kung walang exception,” he said.
“We will see kung anong (reply). Kung papayag sila, ita-take effect na namin yan,” he added.
Dela Torre said he sent the memo to Bello after domestic worker Rinalyn Dulluog fell to her death on August 9 while cleaning the windows of her employer’s flat on the 49th floor of their building in Tsuen Kwan O.
He said the “exception” on cleaning windows could be specified under the heading of “Others” in the list of domestic duties for FDHs in their standard employment contract.
“Dun kasi sa contract, meron dun ‘Others.’ Puwede mag-agree yung employer at worker kung ano pa ang duties at kung ano ang hindi dapat. So, baka yun ang opening na gagawin namin,” he said.
Dela Torre said he also met with the different associations of employment agencies here in Hong Kong to consult them on the matter but they suggested that FDHs get training on occupational safety.
“I met the associations at ang suggestions nila is yung training on occupational safety o orientation on occupational safety pero I have grave doubts about the effectiveness of that,” he said.
“Parang it raises expectations pa nga na it’s alright to clean outside the windows as long as you’re trained. Hindi ako pabor doon,” he added.
Dela Torre said he would also raise the matter with the Hong Kong Labour Department during the regular technical working group (TWG) meetings.
Via : HongKongNews