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Thursday, 19 June 2014

'Racist' maid ad causes widespread outrage in HK

HONG KONG: A “racist” insurance commercial depicting a male Chinese actor as a Filipina maid has drawn outrage on social media in Hong Kong, with groups representing the city’s domestic helpers calling for an apology.

Aimed at the employers of Hong Kong’s 300,000 maids, who mainly hail from the Philippines and Indonesia, the domestic helper insurance advert for the bank shows the Chinese actor wearing dark orange make-up and a curly wig as he plays clumsy maid “Maria”.

“I think they should make a public apology,” Eni Lestari, spokesman for the Asian Migrants’ Coordinating Body said, describing the ad as “very racist”.

“You are making comedy out of someone, out of a community,” she said, questioning why the bank did not hire someone from Indonesia or the Philippines to play the maid.

The bank expressed regret and said its advertisement was not intended to be discriminatory on grounds of race or gender.

“Nevertheless, we have taken action to withdraw the said advertisement as we sincerely do not wish to upset any member of the public,” it said in a statement. — AFP

Tags / Keywords: hong kong


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