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The Discrimination Legislation (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 2018 (Bill) was gazetted on 30 November 2018. The Bill seeks to enhance protection against discrimination and harassment by amending Hong Kong’s four anti-discrimination ordinances, namely the Sex Discrimination Ordinance (SDO), the Disability Discrimination Ordinance (DDO), the Family Status Discrimination Ordinance (FSDO), and the Race Discrimination Ordinance (RDO), pursuant to the eight recommendations of priority made by the Equal Opportunities Commission in its Report on the Discrimination Law Review.
The proposed amendments made by the Bill include the following:
The First Reading of the Bill and the commencement of Second Reading Debate took place on 12 December 2018. Should the Bill be passed, the said amendments will have implications for gender, family, productivity and economics, as suggested by the Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau. For example, the proposed amendments would encourage breastfeeding women to stay in the work force while fulfilling their parental obligations through breastfeeding, thereby reducing the turnover of female employees and sustaining Hong Kong’s economic vitality. Employers are reminded to make adjustments accordingly to ensure compliance with this policy change.
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