Equal Opportunities Commission


Press Releases

Press Releases

EOC Gives Legal Assistance in a Disability Discrimination and Dismissal Case Related to COVID-19


The Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) has today (23 May 2022) issued legal proceedings under the Disability Discrimination Ordinance (DDO), Cap. 487 in the District Court, on behalf of a person (the Claimant) who alleged that his former employer (the Respondent) discriminated against him by terminating his employment on the ground of his disability (i.e. being infected with COVID-19).

The Claimant was employed by the Respondent as Project Manager. A few days after he had reported duty, the Claimant was diagnosed with COVID-19 infection and was hospitalised. During his hospitalisation, the Claimant received a termination message sent by the Respondent via WhatsApp, which stated that he was dismissed because of his infection with COVID-19.

The DDO protects persons with disability against discrimination, harassment and vilification. Under the DDO, it is unlawful for an employer to dismiss an employee on the ground of the employee’s disability, i.e. COVID-19 infection in this case.

This is the second COVID-19 related disability discrimination case that the EOC took to the court. By taking this case to the court, the EOC hopes to reinforce public awareness and remind employers that disability discrimination in the workplace is unlawful and it is important to refrain from taking unnecessary measures against people who have COVID-19 infection. It would also reiterate the fundamentality of principles against discrimination even in times of changing public health landscape posed by COVID-19.


Equal Opportunities Commission
23 May 2022