Submissions and Policy Papers
Amnesties in Hong Kong – Preliminary Discussion Paper: December 2019
This preliminary discussion paper presents a case for the use of amnesties to address the current civil conflict in Hong Kong. It argues that amnesties for offences committed in relation to public protests in Hong Kong would be an exceptional but justified measure to de-escalate conflict and rebuild trust between people and government. It explains how immunities from prosecution and pardons might be implemented within Hong Kong’s existing legal framework. Drawing on experiences in other parts of the world, it also suggests how issues such as who should be eligible and what kinds of offences could be included or excluded can be addressed in the design and operation of an amnesty. This paper sets out the range of issues to be considered in relation to amnesty in order to provide a basis for informed discussion of amnesty in the current context of Hong Kong.
Separate but equal? Same-sex couples’ unequal access to public housing in Hong Kong and its fiscal implications: May 2019
CCPL research finds that due to the discriminatory nature of the public housing policy, LGB individuals are subjected to an economic penalty of HKD233,539. Findings of the study also suggest that the impugned policy is counter-productive to distributing public housing fairly and efficiently. Download the full report here.
Dreams of Pakistani Children: In-depth conversations with 22 girls and 3 boys: April 2019
WSRC Convenor Puja Kapai recently launched her research report on Dreams of Pakistani Children: In-depth conversations with 22 girls and 3 boys, commissioned by the Zubin Foundation and funded by Plan International Hong Kong. The report was presented to the Secretary for Labour and Welfare and has served as the basis for discussion with relevant stakeholders at the initial launch.
As the research findings show, practices, expectations and experiences of a sample of Pakistani girls in Hong Kong is indicative of challenges to their equal right to education, their developmental rights under the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the realization of their full potential towards a life they aspire to lead. The findings confirm that early engagement is seen as prevalent among Pakistani girls in Hong Kong. This sets them on course towards a trajectory where they are expected to abandon their dreams to study or work in later years of their life and work towards the fulfillment of their family’s expectations for their marriage and building a suitable home life.
The research findings provide detailed insights into the different contexts and factors which constrain the dreams and aspirations of Pakistani girls in Hong Kong at different stages of their lives. In particular, it highlights key areas for support and the provision of opportunities and incentives for all related Hong Kong stakeholders to address the gendered impact of the operative norms and structures on Pakistani girls, with the hope of identifying a multi-disciplinary approach to enhancing the prospects for equality of access to education and other forms of empowerment of Pakistani girls’.
Submission to the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination: July 2018
CCPL submitted to the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination in July 2018. This submission is based on research conducted by students enrolled in Equality and Non-discrimination, an elective course in the Faculty of Law at the University of Hong Kong in the spring semester of 2018. The full paper is available for download below.
Research Report on Support in Hong Kong for Same-sex Couples’ Rights: July 2018
A research report issued by the CCPL shows that Hong Kong public opinion on same-sex couples’ rights has changed significantly in recent years. The survey shows that over half of Hong Kong people support same-sex marriage. Read the Press Release and the Full Report here:
Submission to the Legislative Council’s Panel on Constitutional Affairs: 16 July 2018
Puja Kapai submitted to the Legislative Council’s Panel on Constitutional Affairs with regards to the third report of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region under the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. The full paper is available for download below.
Submission to the Legislative Council’s Subcommittee on Rights of Ethnic Minorities: 9 July 2018
Puja Kapai submitted to the Legislative Council’s Subcommittee on Rights of Ethnic Minorities on “The Work of the Ethnic Minorities Steering Committee and Support Measures for Ethnic Minorities”. The full paper is available for download below.
Public Attitudes Towards Transgender People and Antidiscrimination Legislation: June 2018
CCPL research shows that a majority of people in Hong Kong are accepting of transgender people and support legislation prohibiting discrimination on the basis of gender identity. Led by Kelley Loper, CCPL’s Director, Holning Lau from the University of North Carolina School of Law, Charles Lau from RTI International, and Yiu-tung Suen from the Chinese University of Hong Kong, the survey finds that a majority (80%) of Hong Kong said they are either very accepting, moderately accepting, or a little accepting of transgender people. In addition, 67% of people agreed that Hong Kong should have a law that protects people from being discriminated against because they are transgender.
Submission to the Legislative Council’s Panel on Constitutional Affairs: 22 January 2018
The Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau issued the Administrative Guidelines on Promotion of Racial Equality in 2010 to “promot[e] racial equality and ensure equal access to public services in the key areas concerned, and to take this into account in the formulation, implementation and review of relevant policies and measures”. In January 2018, Puja Kapai submitted to the Legislative Council’s Panel on Constitutional Affairs on implementation and review of the Administrative Guidelines on Promotion of Racial Equality. The full paper is available for download below.
Submission to the Legislative Council’s Subcommittee on Children’s Rights: 22 January 2018
The numerous tragedies afflicting children in Hong Kong where abuse towards them has resulted in their death, serious harms and injuries and life-long psychological impairment have also called attention to our broken system where law, policies, frontline responders and the social welfare system in general failed our children. Against this backdrop, Puja Kapai submitted to the Legislative Council’s Subcommittee on Children’s Rights on “Rights of children affected by domestic violence”. The full paper is available for download below.
Submission to the Hong Kong Government’s Inter-departmental Working Group on Gender Recognition: December 2017
On 20 November 2017, Centre Director Kelley Loper made a deputation to the Legislative Council Panel on Administration of Justice and Legal Services on the Consultation on Gender Recognition issued by the Hong Kong Government’s Inter-departmental Working Group on Gender Recognition. She presented the results of a CCPL study conducted with Holning Lau from the University of North Carolina and Charles Lau from RTI International. The project team analysed data from a recent telephone survey, run by the HKU Social Science Research Centre, that measured public opinion toward transgender people in Hong Kong. The survey found that a majority of the Hong Kong general public accepted transgender people, and 68% supported legislation to protect people from discrimination because they are transgender. The full paper is available for download below.
Submission to the Panel on Welfare Services, Legislative Council: 4 October 2017
Puja Kapai submitted to the Panel on Welfare Services with regards to the proposed legislation to implement the recommendations of the Law Reform Commission Report on Child Custody and Access and relevant support measures. This paper seeks to focus specifically on the invariable incompatibility between the proposed model and the outcomes for families where domestic violence and abuse has featured prominently in the relationship. The full paper is available for download below.
Submission to the Legislative Council Social Welfare Panel’s Subcommittee on Strategy and Measures to Combat Domestic and Sexual Violence: October 2015
Puja Kapai, Director of the Center for Comparative and Public Law, submitted her views with regards to support services for ethnic minorities facing domestic violence and sexual Violence. As part of the submission, she presented the results of her recent empirical study on how culture, race, ethnicity, religion, gender, immigration status, financial dependence and language barriers intersect to undermine the likelihood that the victims would seek help. The study’s findings identified perceptions of discrimination and the lack of culturally appropriate strategies and forms of assistance as indicators of the institutional incompetence of frontline responders on multiple levels. The full paper is available for download below.
Response Paper: Submission for Public Consultation on the Discrimination Law Review: November 2014
The Hong Kong Equal Opportunities Commission launched a Discrimination Law Review in July 2014. In light of this, Antonio Da Roza, Farzana Aslam and Kelley Loper prepared varying responses to the consultation for joint submission to the consultation. These responses to the public consultation exercise highlight some of the limitations and disappointing omissions of Hong Kong’s current body of anti-discrimination legislation. It is hoped that the review process will help the EOC raise awareness about the urgent need for law reform and advocate for actualization of such reform.
Briefing Paper: Public Attitudes towards Gays and Lesbians and towards Sexual Orientation Anti-discrimination Legislation: October 2014
There is mounting discussion about introducing legislation in Hong Kong to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation in the private sector. The Hong Kong Equal Opportunities Commission launched a Discrimination Law Review in July 2014 and has commissioned a study on the feasibility of legislating against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and intersex status. To inform this conversation, this briefing paper was prepared by Kelley Loper, Holning Lau and Charles Lau to present public opinion data from a 2013 telephone survey. The Briefing Paper reports public attitudes towards gays and lesbians and towards proposed anti-discrimination legislation.
Briefing Paper: Research Shows a Majority of People in Hong Kong Support Gay and Lesbian Couples’ Rights, Not Necessarily Marriage: January 2014
Discussions in Hong Kong about same-sex couples’ rights often focus on the issue of same-sex marriage. However, marriage is not the only way the government could extend rights to same-sex couples. In other parts of the world, governments have conferred rights upon gay and lesbian couples without legalising same-sex marriage. Some governments have developed programs that grant same-sex couples a subset of the rights that married heterosexual couples enjoy, for example the right to hospital visitation, the right to inheritance, and the right to sue in cases of fatal accidents. Against this backdrop, researchers Kelley Loper, Holning Lau and Charles Lau conducted this public opinion survey to investigate Hong Kong people’s attitudes towards granting same-sex couples a variety of rights.
Ways to improve the situation of refugees, torture claimants and asylum seekers in Hong Kong: July 2013
On 18 July 2013 former CCPL Director Simon Young, Director Puja Kapai and Deputy Director Kelley Loper jointly submitted a paper to the Members of the Legislative Council Panel for their consideration at the Special Meeting of the LegCo Panel on Welfare Services. The paper recommends that the Hong Kong Government commission a comprehensive comparative study of the basic social, medical and economic benefits/entitlements provided to refugees, torture claimants and asylum seekers in a representative range of jurisdictions.
Education of Ethnic Minority Children: December 2011
On 22 December 2011, CCPL Deputy Director Puja Kapai submitted a brief to the Members of the Legislative Council Panel on Education regarding the legal obligations incumbent upon the HKSAR Government with regard to the provision of access to education for children from ethnic minority communities. The paper examines the administration’s current approach to ethnic minority language education and details the likely impact and legal implications of the Education Bureau’s proposed and/or recently implemented measures.
Arrangements for Filling Vacancies in the Legislative Council: September 2011
On 20 September 2011, CCPL submitted a brief to the Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau on the arrangements for filling vacancies in the Legislative Council. The submission discusses the inherent weaknesses of the four options suggested by the consultation paper and offers a ‘fifth option’ for reform; a replacement mechanism similar to the British model of filling in casual vacancies in the European Parliament.
Submission to LegCo Panel on Public Service Language Proficiency Requirements: May 2010
Political Reform Proposal: Breaking the Deadlock: February 2010
On 19 February 2010, CCPL submitted its final proposals for reform of the Election Committee and Legislative Council for 2012 to the Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau. These submissions may be downloaded here:
Air Quality Objectives Review: November 2009
Submission to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD): August 2009
Briefing on Hong Kong’s Race Discrimination Bill to the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination: February 2008
Kelley Loper, Research Assistant Professor
Submission on Hong Kong’s International Legal Obligations toward Refugees and Asylum Seekers For Consideration at the Joint Meeting of the Legislative Council Panels on Welfare Services and Security on the situation of asylum seekers, refugees and claimants against torture in Hong Kong: July 2006
Kelley Loper, Research Assistant Professor
Submission to Legislative Council’s Security Panel on Police Undercover Operations for Vice Activities for Zi Teng, an organization working to protect the rights of sex workers: April 2006
Simon N M Young, Associate Professor
First submission Download
Administration’s response Download
Second submission Download
Submissions to the Constitutional Reform Task Force: September 2004
Simon N M Young, Associate Professor
Submissions on the United Nations (Anti-Terrorism Measures) (Amendment) Bill 2003 by Simon N.M. Young, Associate Professor: January 2004
First submission [PDF]
Administration’s response to first submission [PDF]
Second submission [PDF]
Submissions by other parties can be found on the LegCo Bills Commitee website.
“Knock knock, Who’s there?” – Warrentless Searches for Article 23 Offences”, Simon N.M. Young, Associate Professor: June 2003
Group Submission to the Legislative Council, the Department of Justice, and the Security Bureau of the Hong Kong SAR on the National Security (Legislative Provisions) Bill: May 2003
Submission on The Proposals to Implement Article 23 of the Basic Law: December 2002
Submission to the Legal Policy Division on its Consultation Paper on Marital Rape and Related Sexual Offences, 17 December 2000
Submission to the Legco Panel on Home Affairs on the Initial Report on the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region under the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, 9 November 1998