EOC Launches Equal Opportunities Month: Together for an Equal and Inclusive Hong Kong
The Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) announced today (10 June 2022) the launch of a citywide awareness and promotional campaign “Equal Opportunities Month: Together for an Equal and Inclusive Hong Kong”, as celebrations pick up for the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). Featuring a plethora of online and offline activities and promotions across multiple platforms, the campaign is aimed to highlight the importance and shared benefits of equal opportunities, and mobilise community members to embrace the values of diversity and inclusion.
EOC Chairperson Mr Ricky CHU Man-kin explained the rationale behind the campaign, “Our city has been plagued by the COVID-19 epidemic in the last few years. With the support of the Central Government and the concerted effort of the HKSAR Government and different community sectors, we have weathered through the adversities and brought the fifth wave of the epidemic under control. As our daily life and activities are gradually getting back on track, we must not forget that various segments of society, including persons with disabilities, ethnic minority communities and low-income women, continue to face severe challenges in education, employment and other aspects of public life.”
“In creating this campaign, we hope to raise public awareness of the importance of equal opportunities, diversity and inclusion – in the workplace and our society – and build a sense of togetherness, as various sectors focus on recovery,” Mr CHU continued. “This campaign ties in with the celebrations for the 25th anniversary of the HKSAR and serves to foster greater social cohesion. We are aiming to engage different sectors of the community and mobilise everyone to play a part in building a fairer, more caring and inclusive society, which will in turn contribute to the long-term stability and prosperity of Hong Kong.”
The major highlight of the campaign is a series of short movies produced in collaboration with veteran actor, singer, playwright and director Steven MA Chun-wai. Entitled “Under the Same Sky”, the short movies depict experiences of prejudices and discrimination in different forms, and how these impact the lives and relationships of the people concerned. The production is expected to appeal to a wide audience, helping to generate dialogue and empower viewers to call out discrimination. The production’s theme song “I Believe”, which is composed by local musician with visual impairment Hin LEE and performed by Steven Ma, has been released for broadcast by local radio stations, while the movie series is scheduled for release in autumn 2022. The EOC is already planning on community and school screening to bring the conversation about discrimination to different parts of the community.
Other audio-visual content under the campaign includes a video about the work of the EOC –“Walking in Solidarity: A Day at the EOC”. The video offers an inside look at the work of the EOC, as staff members from different divisions walk viewers through their daily schedules – from handling and conciliating complaints, working on legally assisted cases, drawing up policy recommendations and research reports, providing administrative support to communicating with the media and stakeholders. Available on the EOC website and YouTube channel, the video enables the public to better understand the values and culture of the EOC and its indispensable role in society.
In addition, the EOC is releasing a series of animated videos “Understanding the Disability Discrimination Ordinance (DDO)” on its YouTube channel. The 18-episode video series explains the protection available under the ordinance against disability discrimination, harassment and vilification in the workplace. The content is based on the radio programmes under the “Employment Equality Project” in collaboration with Radio Television Hong Kong Radio 1, while the animation is created by members of the social enterprise Let’s Talk ADHD, which supports persons with attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder. According to the EOC’s statistics, complaints filed under the DDO took up the largest share of complaints handled by the EOC each year, with the majority falling in the employment field. The animated videos serve to explain the rights and obligations of employers and employees under the DDO, so that they can take better preventive measures.
On top of raising public awareness through audio-visual materials, the EOC is also engaging different community segments through a range of activities and programmes. One of the highlights is an Equal Opportunity Youth Ambassadors Scheme targeting tertiary students in Hong Kong. Conducted between September 2022 and June 2023, the Scheme is geared for increasing youth engagement and participation as drivers of equal opportunities and positive change. Through mentoring and experiential activities, as well as project development, participants will be able to expand their skills and knowledge, which will in turn prepare them to contribute positively to society. Information about the Scheme, including recruitment details, will be announced in due course.
Other activities of the campaign include: seminar and social media campaign on fair employment of migrant domestic workers in June 2022, and presentation of awards of the “Equality and Respect: Stop Sexual Harassment” Sticker Design Competition 2022, also happening in June 2022. And to spread the message to commuters, the EOC has lined up advertising on MTR and bus body, which will feature posters on racially inclusive services (from June 2022), protection against breastfeeding discrimination and harassment and against sexual, disability and racial harassment in common workplace (July – September 2022).
The Equal Opportunities Month is an accredited event celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the Establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. For details, please visit the Government’s website: https://www.hksar25.gov.hk/en/events_local.html and the EOC website: https://www.eoc.org.hk/en/eomonth.
Equal Opportunities Commission
10 June 2022