Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Cry of the Refugees

 A number of refugees are protesting in front of Wu Chung Building in Wanchai, where the Social Welfare Department is.  They are protesting against the ISS-HK, Hong Kong Branch of the International Social Service.  They are also protesting against the Welfare Department, who gave a contract to the ISS-HK to provide food and accommodation to the refugees.  They complain that the ISS-HK is short changing them, and there is corruption in the process. 

One of the refugees told me that the condition of some of the places provide for them to live in are filthy, that some of the huts that they are living in were built illegally, that the ISS forged his signature, that the benefits that they actually receive are only fractions of what the government is giving them.  He complained that the police refuse to take his case when he tried to make a report of these “crimes”.  He has been in Hong Kong for 6 years.  He said he speaks Arabic and is knowledgeable about information technology.  He can work as a teacher or translator.  But he is not allowed to work.  He said they trust no organisation other than the newly formed “Refugee Union”. 

have no way to verify these complaints but it is clear that they are very upset about how they are treated. I heard that there are at least 5,000 of them in Hong Kong.  Many of them have been here for many years.  Many children have been born here and know no other home.  For a prosperous place such as Hong Kong, this is really a shame.  



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