Hong Kong – Two illegal workers jailed

Two illegal workers jailed


     Two Bangladeshi illegal workers holding recognisance forms were jailed by Shatin Magistrates’ Courts on August 11 and today (August 15).

     During an anti-illegal worker operation conducted on November 29 and December 28 last year, Immigration Department (ImmD) investigators raided Yuen Long and Kwai Chung Districts. Two Bangladeshi males, aged 35 and 39, were arrested while working as food delivery workers. Upon identity checking, they produced for inspection recognisance forms issued by the ImmD, which prohibit them from taking employmemnt. Further investigation revealed that they were non-refoulement claimants.

     The two illegal workers were charged at Shatin Magistrates’ Courts on August 11 and today with taking employment while being a person in respect of whom a removal order or deportation order was in force. After trial, they were each sentenced to 22 months and 14 days’ imprisonment.

     The ImmD spokesman warned that, as stipulated in section 38AA of the Immigration Ordinance, an illegal immigrant, a person who is the subject of a removal order or a deportation order, an overstayer or a person who was refused permission to land is prohibited from taking any employment, whether paid or unpaid, or establishing or joining in any business. Offenders are liable upon conviction to a maximum fine of $50,000 and up to three years’ imprisonment.

     The spokesman reiterated that it is a serious offence to employ people who are not lawfully employable. Under the Immigration Ordinance, the maximum penalty for an employer employing a person who is not lawfully employable, i.e. an illegal immigrant, a person who is the subject of a removal order or a deportation order, an overstayer or a person who was refused permission to land, has been significantly increased from a fine of $350,000 and three years’ imprisonment to a fine of $500,000 and 10 years’ imprisonment to reflect the gravity of such offences. The director, manager, secretary, partner, etc, of the company concerned may also bear criminal liability. The High Court has laid down sentencing guidelines that the employer of an illegal worker should be given an immediate custodial sentence.

     According to the court sentencing, employers must take all practicable steps to determine whether a person is lawfully employable prior to employment. Apart from inspecting a prospective employee’s identity card, the employer has the explicit duty to make enquiries regarding the person and ensure that the answers would not cast any reasonable doubt concerning the lawful employability of the person. The court will not accept failure to do so as a defence in proceedings. It is also an offence if an employer fails to inspect the job seeker’s valid travel document if the job seeker does not have a Hong Kong permanent identity card. Offenders are liable upon conviction to a maximum fine of $150,000 and to imprisonment for one year. In that connection, the spokesman would like to remind all employers not to defy the law by employing illegal workers. The ImmD will continue to take resolute enforcement action to combat such offences.

     Under the existing mechanism, the ImmD will, as a standard procedure, conduct initial screening of vulnerable persons, including illegal workers, illegal immigrants, sex workers and foreign domestic helpers, who are arrested during any operation with a view to ascertaining whether they are trafficking in persons (TIP) victims. When any TIP indicator is revealed in the initial screening, the officers will conduct a full debriefing and identification by using a standardised checklist to ascertain the presence of TIP elements, such as threats and coercion in the recruitment phase and the nature of exploitation. Identified TIP victims will be provided with various forms of support and assistance, including urgent intervention, medical services, counselling, shelter, temporary accommodation and other supporting services. The ImmD calls on TIP victims to report crimes to the relevant departments immediately.

Migrant Workers trained under Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyaan

The Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyaan (GKRA) was launched on 20th June 2020, for a period of 125 days to boost employment and livelihood opportunities for migrant workers returning to villages and similarly affected citizens in rural area. The GKRA ended on 22nd October, 2020 and a total of 50.78 crore person-days employment were generated with a total expenditure of Rs. 39,293 crore during the Abhiyaan.

Training has been conducted through Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) during Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyaan. A total of 1,922 trainings were conducted and 68,136 candidates were trained.

Project ‘UNNATI’, launched in December 2019 by Government of India, is a skilling project that intends to upgrade the skill base of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (Mahatma Gandhi NREGS) workers, and thereby improve their livelihoods, so that they can move from the current partial employment to full employment.

There are two skill development programme for rural youth under Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM), namely, Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Grameen Kaushalya Yojana (DDU-GKY) and Rural Self Employment Training institutes (RSETIs). Both these programmes are aimed at increasing employability of rural youth, either for wage employment or self employment.

Start-up Village Entrepreneurship Programme (SVEP) under DAY-NRLM programme supports the Self-Help Groups and their family members to set-up small enterprises in to non-farm sector.

The Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) has launched the Rural Mason Training (RMT) programme under the Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana- Gramin (PMAY-G) to address the issue of insufficient number of skilled masons for construction of quality PMAY-G houses. The MoRD has partnered with the Construction Skill Development Council of India (CSDCI) and National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) in the implementation of the RMT program.

Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship is implementing Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) under Skill India Mission for skill based training of the youth across the country (including youth belonging to rural areas) under Short Term Training (STT) courses and Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). Under PMKVY, STT is linked to placement, while RPL does not mandate placements as it recognizes the existing skills of candidate.

At present, third phase of PMKVY i.e. PMKVY 3.0 is being implemented. PMKVY 3.0 is a demand driven scheme with bottom-up approach and District Skill Committees (DSCs) have been entrusted with the task of identifying local demand, based on which training has been arranged in the district which strengthens the local skill capability including in the rural areas.

This information was given by the Union Minister of State for Rural Development, Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.



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More than 2 billion workers make up the informal economy

More than 2 billion workers make up the informal economy. That’s 6 out of every 10 workers in the world who live without labor or social protections. The economic recovery of these workers is a critical component of a global economic rebound from the Covid-19 crisis.

To understand the scale of informal labor and its impact on the economy, Ford Foundation partnered with The Guardian on this special feature that breaks down the challenges facing workers and highlights solutions to build a truly equitable future of work.

Read the full article in The Guardian.

The Ford Foundation

The Ford Foundation is an independent, nonprofit grant-making organization with assets currently valued at $16 billion. For more than 85 years it has worked with courageous people on the frontlines of social change worldwide, guided by its mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement. With headquarters in New York, the foundation has offices in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia.

Frontline workers to be celebrated during Shawnee Riverfest X benefit Concert

As communities start to gather for the first time in over a year, The Shawnee Riverfest Concert is set to recognize and celebrate our frontline workers. Over 12 International, National, and Local acts unite to support the Pocono Mountains United Way

EAST STROUDSBURG, Pa.May 25, 2021PRLog — East Stroudsburg, PA – As communities start to gather again, the need for togetherness and fun will bring many individuals out this summer. One much anticipated annual event in the Poconos, Shawnee Riverfest, will once again bring many out to enjoy good music, food, friends and this year will also honor frontline workers who helped us through an unprecedented year.

The 10th Annual Shawnee Riverfest Free Concert will take place Sunday, July 11, 2021 at the historic Shawnee Inn, along the banks of the Delaware River. The 8-hour free concert will bring in over 10 International, national and local acts to unite and support Pocono Mountains United Way’s mission in supporting our community.  This event will practice social distancing and masks are encouraged.

The day will include a moment of silence for those we lost due to COVID in our community, presented by State Representative Rosemary Brown, as well as a special award presentation to a community frontline worker whose work and efforts has been recognized during this past year.

“This year will be unlike any other as we celebrate these frontline workers. It is because of their efforts and commitment that we are now looking toward the light at the end of the tunnel, and we want to take a day and celebrate all their hard work and efforts, while remembering those we lost,” event organizer Gil Coronado said.

The cast of Beautiful Day/Un Dia Bonito Show, host Dorimar Bonilla and co-hosts Alexa Sanchez and Monique Lynch Cosme, will serve as emcees for this year’s event. Some of the confirmed acts this year are national touring act Wild Planes, NY artist Nik Hartfield, Harley, Fusia Dance Center, Stephanie Campbell, Elizabeth Gillen, DJ Queue, and the Shawnee Playhouse cast of Frozen, Jr. ..with more acts being announced! An outdoor photo booth will be available by Rockin’ Photobooth for families to capture their special moments at Shawnee Riverfest. Also, a highly energetic Zumba 2 Riverfest session led by Sandra Rivera and Alan Divo Emmons kicks off the concert. Food vendors will be on hand to keep our attendee’s appetites satisfied and thirst quenched. There will also be a silent auction at the event, where attendees can bid on a variety of items.  Sponsors of Shawnee Riverfest include Pocono 96.7, CILA LLC Management, Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort, Sonia’s Sweet Inspirations, Rockin’ Photobooth and DJ Queue.

Shawnee Riverfest X will once again benefit Pocono Mountains United Way.

“We are thankful to Gil, CILA Management and the amazing event sponsors for their dedication to helping the United Way and our community and we are especially grateful to the frontline workers who have helped us get through such a challenging year,” Pocono Mountains United Way President/CEO Michael Tukeva said.

For more information visit www.shawneeriverfest.com

Who: General Public and Press

What: Shawnee Riverfest X Concert

Where: Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort

100 Shawnee Drive, Shawnee on Delaware, PA

When: Sunday July 11
th, 2021 11:30 am- 7:30 pm

Admission:  Concert FREE Zumba $10 donation includes Riverfest T-shirt

Contact: Gil Coronado
gcoronado.cila@gmail.com for press, media inquiries

To Support, Sponsor, Vendor call 201-753-0093