Mary Ma, of local free rag The (sub)Standard, is possibly Hong Kong’s most dreadful troll. When she isn’t lamenting HK’s freedom of speech or claiming the Tiananmen massacre is ‘bygones‘, she’s manufacturing outrage over the city’s most vulnerable residents.
In yesterday’s facepalm-inducing column, she compared asylum seekers to criminals (via “a quick internet search“) and then speculated that “probably only a handful” of asylum cases are genuine. Can this still even be called journalism? The newspaper claims to have won 11 awards in today’s edition – what was the competition like?
Hong Kong has much more pressing issues, such as rampant inequality or corporate corruption, without the vested interests of the Sing Tao group demonising an already marginalised section of society. In fact, their plight is very much under-reported. This year, the UNHCR budget was cut by 30% with refugees now receiving just $300 a month. Although the government provides $1200 to landlords to accommodate refugees, many are being evicted as they cannot work to help pay high rents.
Tell Mary and the team what you think: [email protected] – include your name, phone number and address.
- Vision First – excellent local NGO helping asylum seekers.
- HK Refugee Advice Centre
- Christian Action – has a centre in Chungking Mansions.
- Seeking Refuge.hk
- Time Out report
- Wikipedia – Refugees in Hong Kong