Hong Kong Flight Attendants Fight Back


Female cabin crew talk about harassment by not only passengers but also other airline staff (FILE)

Hong Kong: 

Immaculate-looking flight attendants who appear unruffled by the demands of a life spent in the air are part of the slick image sold by carriers — but Hong Kong-based workers are increasingly hitting back against sexual harassment.

Female cabin crew told news agency AFP of how they had been harassed by not only passengers but also other airline staff.

While they say carriers have made some steps in the right direction, they argue airlines still lag far behind in the #MeToo era.

Venus Fung, whose experiences drove her to join and lead the Cabin Attendants Union of Hong Kong, says airlines must teach workers on how to deal with harassment.

Fung, 29, said the issue was never raised in her company training.

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Venus Fung, whose experiences drove her to join and lead the Cabin Attendants Union of Hong Kong, says airlines must teach workers on how to deal with harassment.

The Hong Kong-based attendant told news agency AFP she had been physically picked up by a pilot who touched her chest, waist and bottom, commenting she had a nice body, when she was new to the job more than two years ago.

“At that moment I was really angry, but I was mostly also panicking and afraid. My mind went completely blank — I had no idea what to do or how to react,” said Fung, who works for a European airline which she did not want to identify for fear of recrimination.

The cabin manager who witnessed the incident did not intervene, Fung added, instead threatening to report her for wearing a skirt that was “too tight”.

As a result Fung stopped wearing skirts at work for more than a year, opting for trousers instead.

She has since been training colleagues on how to report sexual harassment and seek help, but said long-term cultural changes are needed.

“When a flight attendant comes out it looks very fancy with the uniform, heels and makeup. There are fantasies around this industry and it’s hard to change public perception but it absolutely cannot be an excuse for bad behaviour,” Fung said, calling for an awareness-raising campaign.

“Education is key to changing people’s attitudes. It’s difficult to carry out overnight, it takes time, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do these things.”

The airline did not respond to requests by news agency AFP for comment.

Bikini backlash

The complaints from attendants like Fung come as demands for change grow worldwide.

The US-based Association of Flight Attendants last year called on American airlines to “renounce the past objectification of flight attendants”.

Vietnamese budget carrier VietJet, which has staffed some of its inaugural flights with bikini-clad attendants and publishes a calendar featuring scantily-dressed models posing on planes, has sparked criticism for its marketing ploys.

Owned by Vietnam’s only female billionaire, the airline had to apologise for sending lingerie models to join the country’s under-23 football squad on a flight home in January after a social media outcry.

Some airline staff in Hong Kong told news agency AFP the perceived glamour attracted many women to the job — there are popular makeup tutorials on YouTube by flight attendants from Dubai-based airline Emirates on how to achieve their look.

But others say some of the industry’s grooming standards are outdated.

Staff at Hong Kong flag carrier Cathay Pacific must wear eyeshadow, lipstick and nail polish in specifically approved shades and check it at regular intervals, according to an official handbook.

Male staff are also under scrutiny — banned from wearing make-up but told they must “maintain a clear complexion at all times”.

Cathay’s cabin crew representatives say they will push to make nail polish optional in talks with the company next year.

The airline announced in March it would introduce a trouser option for female attendants, ending a 70-year skirt rule.

But Dora Lai, Cathay Pacific Flight Attendants Union leader and a cabin manager, said that while the move was a step toward gender equality, it would do little to end sexual harassment without a shift in public and staff awareness.

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Dora Lai said many airline advertisements deployed beautiful women to sell the industry’s “sex appeal”, rather than the practical skills of the job.

Lai said many airline advertisements deployed beautiful women to sell the industry’s “sex appeal”, rather than the practical skills of the job.

“We are there to provide a service and to bring our passengers safely from point A to point B,” she said.

Zero tolerance

Despite Cathay launching an online course with a special section on sexual harassment for Hong Kong cabin staff in March, the union says some in-flight managers continue to distrust staff who report cases.

A Cathay attendant who did not want to be identified told news agency AFP her in-flight manager had been reluctant to warn a passenger who had patted her head and back repeatedly, which she described as “humiliating”.

“I felt angry and sad. I was the concerned party, not just relaying the incident… And after telling him, the supervisor was still not supportive,” she said.

Cathay Pacific told news agency AFP it provided training to all staff on the “prevention and elimination of discrimination and harassment in the workplace”.

But attendant Michelle Choi said the company needed to go further to support staff in taking immediate action, from giving warnings to asking passengers to apologise, or in some cases reporting to police.

“We want flight attendants to know what they can do instead of feeling embarrassed about reporting the case, and in the end making excuses to tolerate these acts as many used to do before,” she said.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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#NewMenuAlert: Hong Kong Club’s New Menu Promises A Burst Of Flavours With An Edgy Twist 


Highlights

  • Hong Kong Club by Andaz Delhi is a lounge specialising in Cantonese food
  • The Hong Kong Club has found a loyal fanbase among foodies
  • The ingredients for the new menu are sourced from local farms

When about a year back, Andaz Delhi came up with a lounge specialising in Cantonese food, the expectations were towering high. After all, Andaz’s first outing in AnnaMaya had already struck a chord with foodies who loved the delicious, clean and locally sourced food that was on offer. The Hong Kong Club at Andaz, Delhi has been equally successful at finding a loyal fanbase among authentic Cantonese food lovers. And if you have haven’t had the chance to visit this trending hotspot as yet, Hong Kong Club’s sumptuous new tasting menu may be the motivation you have been looking for all this while! 

Speaking about the new menu, executive chef Alexander Moser said, “working with Chef Fuhai, we have created a modern day story, inspired by traditional Cantonese cooking. Using carefully sourced ingredients from our local partners, with time-honoured techniques, we have curated a menu with punchy flavours and the occasional edgy twist. ” 

(Also Read: 5 Things You Should Never Do While Eating Chinese Food)

While Delhi has no dearth of options or accessibility to Chinese food, an authentic Cantonese fair is a rare deal. The extensive range of captivating cocktails and liquers, further elevate the dining experience at this exclusive restaurant.

Cantonese cuisine refers to the cuisine popular in China’s Guangdong Province, particularly the provincial capital, Guangzhou. The eclectic blend of sauces, balance of cold and dry ingredients and soothing consistency of soups and wok-fried dishes make Cantonese cuisine a gastronomic showstopper of sorts in the gourmet space.

The Hong Kong Club, promises to take you on an authentic and flavourful ride through the streets of Guangzhou and offer you some of the best dim sums like the crystal dumplings made with the goodness of cauliflower, red and chinese cabbage or the delicious prawns, asparagus and crispy garlic dumplings. Bao lovers can enjoy a toothsome spread of classic barbequed pork and chicken bao, or the mixed mushroom and oyster sauce bao. Then there’s a range of crispy fried, boiled and lotus leaf wrapped dumplings to leave you further spoiled for choices. 

The hot and cold appetizers made with the locally grown veggies makes for a scrumptious treat too! From asparagus, home cured cucumber, spinach, endives, pomello, scallions, shallots and a lot more fresh and crunchy delights are tossed in a variety of sauces is sure to leave your taste buds tingling long after you have left. 

(Also Read: 13 Best Vegetarian Chinese Recipes| Easy Chinese Recipes)

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Hong Kong Club’s new menu will leave you spoiled for choices

Those looking for authentic Cantonese soup are in for a treat too! Clear mushroom broth with Kashmiri morels wonton, seafood hot and sour soup with prawns and squid lobster and hand-pulled noodle soup, chicken broth with vegetable and crispy shallots are some of the soothing treats on offer. 

Barbeque Hong Kong duck, pork belly, wok fried bamboo red rice, Cantonese sweet and sour prawns, lobster, chicken and crispy noodle fungus with shitake mushrooms are some of the other exciting dishes of the new menu that looks oh-so-interesting to miss! 

Where: Hong Kong Club, Andaz Delhi, Asset 1, Aerocity, New Delhi

Cost For Two: INR 3500





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Five Dead, 31 Injured In Hong Kong Coach Crash: Police


A man and two women were declared dead at the scene and two died in hospital (Representational)

Hong Kong: 

A coach on its way to Hong Kong’s airport collided with a taxi Friday leaving five dead and 31 injured, police said.

The crash happened on the island of Tsing Yi with images on local media showing the back half of the taxi completely crushed and part of the front of the coach sheared off.

A man and two women were declared dead at the scene and two died in hospital, police said.

Local media reports described the bus as a “tourist coach” but reported that it had been carrying workers to the airport.

Tsing Yi is connected by a freeway to Hong Kong International Airport on neighbouring Lantau island.

Television footage showed the injured being treated by the side of the road before they were taken to four hospitals.

The South China Morning Post reported that several of the injured were in serious condition.

One coach passenger said the bus had been travelling fast and had crashed into a stationary taxi with its hazard lights on at the side of the road, according to SCMP.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)





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Hong Kong Open: PV Sindhu, Srikant and Sameer in 2nd round, Saina Nehwal lose in first round


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PV Sindhu Off To Winning Start At Hong Kong Open, Eyes Number One Rank


“It’s not going to be easy because there are some players who are coming up. But definitely one day I will be world number one, that’s what I feel,” Sindhu said.

“The top 10 to 15 players of the world are in the same standard, so it’s just on the day who plays well and gives their best is the number one.”

Sindhu, 23, narrowly lost the 2017 Hong Kong final to Taiwan’s world number one Tai Tzu-ying, who has dominated the rankings over the past two seasons.

The Indian player has had a string of disappointments since, losing five straight finals including at the Asian Games against Tai.

Sindhu’s last victory against Tai was at the Rio Olympics, en route to the silver medal which brought a flood of endorsements. In August, Forbes magazine rated her as the world’s seventh highest paid sportswoman.

She said her elevation and high profile had inspired other players in India, and had also raised expectations about her performances.

“A lot of them have been taking me for inspiration, and there are also a lot of expectations now after this year especially. So to meet their expectations I need to be there and I need to keep working hard,” she said.

“Definitely I think Indian badminton as a sport is growing up and you see a lot of people are picking up badminton so it’s a good sign for Indian badminton I can say, because in a couple of years you will definitely see a lot more players coming up.”

Sindhu looked set to make quick work of her opening match, breaking away from Nitchaon in the first game. But she began to falter soon afterwards as Nitchaon’s powerful smashes battered her into submission in the second game.

However, a pep talk in the last interval saw Sindhu claw back the decider, after the Thai fired long on several crucial points.

“I think I was not up to the mark,” Sindhu said.

“I was very nervous. In the second set I gave a lot of lead and started playing negative, and in the third set it was like I was leading and then she came back closer.

“I could have just played freely… Overall it was very tactical and we had to be very focused and keep the shuttle in the court.”

(With AFP inputs)



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Shilpa Shetty Enjoyed A 24K Gold Plated Ice-Cream In Hong Kong: Heres How Much It Costs!


Highlights

  • Shilpa Shetty is enjoying a family vacation in Hong Kong
  • Shilpa posted a Sunday binge video of herself eating ice-cream
  • The ice-cream is priced at $13 per cone

Binge queen Shilpa Shetty Kundra is in Hong Kong with her family right now and obviously she is giving us a number of reasons to wish we were there right now too! Seems like the beauty is bringing in the festive cheer belatedly, with what looks like and fun-filled family vacation. The fitness and food enthusiast is wildly popular for her ‘Sunday Binge’ videos, which she never fails to post on her Instagram page. The beauty who has 7.7 million followers on Instagram, also doles out fitness and diet tips on her page, in order to inspire her fans and followers to eat healthy. She has always encouraged her followers to eat clean during the weekdays and indulge in sinful treats and dishes during one cheat meal on the weekend.

Shilpa Shetty herself follows this diet philosophy of one cheat meal per week and the former Bollywood actor also makes sure the cheat meal is worth it. Carrying on the bling from Diwali, Shilpa Shetty indulged in some shiny dessert in Hong Kong during this past weekend- an ice-cream cone with a 24 carat gold leaf on top! According to Shilpa, the dessert tasted heavenly as it looked.

Take a look:

Doesn’t that look absolutely decadent? It better be because one cone of this vanilla ice-cream coated with 24K gold leaf can set you back by $13 (approx. Rs 948)! For those of you who would still want to try this expensive treat out, it is available at SOGO i CREMERiA in Hong Kong. It’s an ice-cream parlour which specialises in luxury desserts. Gold plated desserts aren’t new and dessert enthusiasts and Instagram foodies have been lapping this new trend up. From doughnuts to truffle chocolates, gold plating has been showing up atop a number of sweet treats. But these desserts are reportedly not just all about the looks.

Consuming pure gold leaves is said to be great for the metabolism and it is also said to balance the pH level of the body. Would you try this ice-cream covered with pure gold leaf? Let us know in the comments below!





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Hong Kong Bars British Editor From Visiting City Following Visa Ban


Victor Mallet was reportedly turned away at Hong Kong border after several hours of questioning.

HONG KONG: 

Hong Kong barred the Asia news editor of the Financial Times from entering the city as a visitor, the newspaper said, after authorities refused to renew his work visa in October, raising questions about the city’s commitment to free speech.

Victor Mallet “attempted to enter Hong Kong on Thursday as a visitor but was turned away at the border after several hours of questioning by immigration officers,” the Financial Times said.

Mallet did not comment further when contacted by Reuters.

Hong Kong’s government said the case had nothing to do with freedom of expression or the press.

“In considering any application for entry, we will be acting in accordance with the law and the prevailing immigration policy to make a decision,” it said in an emailed statement on Friday.

Analysts have cited the FT editor’s case among other examples of Hong Kong officials taking a tough line on perceived critics and dissent in the former British colony.

On Thursday, a prominent Chinese dissident writer, Ma Jian, said on Twitter that he was told by a Hong Kong arts centre that it would no longer host two of his talks as part of the Hong Kong International Literary Festival.

In Mallet’s case, the government declined to renew his work visa last month after a speech he hosted at the Hong Kong Foreign Correspondents’ Club (FCC) by an independence activist was strongly condemned by officials in China and Hong Kong.

Authorities did not give a reason for the visa decision, which shocked many in the city’s international community and revived a debate over promised freedoms in the financial hub.

The FCC said on its website on Friday it was “shocked and baffled” by Mallet’s denied entry into Hong Kong.

Joshua Rosenzweig, East Asia Research Director for rights group Amnesty International, tweeted that Hong Kong’s action was “totally unacceptable and smacks of continued retaliation.”

RIGHTS UNDER SCRUTINY

Beijing and Hong Kong authorities say independence violates the “one country, two systems” principle which has governed the territory since it was handed back to China in 1997.

The principle promises Hong Kong a high degree of autonomy and freedoms not enjoyed elsewhere in China, rights which are enshrined in a mini-constitution known as the Basic Law.

The human rights situation in Hong Kong came under scrutiny in Geneva this week from several foreign governments at a United Nations hearing on rights in China.

On Thursday, exiled Chinese author Ma Jian tweeted that the Tai Kwun arts centre, which was set up with government support, had cancelled two events where he was to speak.

Tai Kwun director Timothy Calnin said in an emailed statement that the centre “did not want to become a platform to promote the political interests of any individual.”

Ma said he had been unable to find a Hong Kong publisher for his satirical novel, China Dream, dubbed by Hong Kong’s literary festival organisers as “Ma’s answer to President Xi Jinping’s goal of restored national greatness”.

“I’m a novelist, not an activist, and am attending the Festival to discuss my new novel, China Dream. My ‘politics’ are simple: I believe in free thought and free speech. Without them, life has no meaning,” Ma wrote on Twitter.

Ma is due to arrive in Hong Kong on Friday afternoon.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)





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Jelena Ostapenko Dumped Out Of Hong Kong Open By Lowly Kristina Kucova


The match ended on a farcical note when a shot by Kucova was called in even though it appeared to land well beyond the baseline. An angry Ostapenko, out of challenges, then faced a double match point and quickly succumbed to go down 7-5, 3-6, 2-6.

“In tennis sometimes one ball can decide the whole match. That ball was quite far out — I was surprised the chair umpire didn’t call it,” Ostapenko said.

“But unfortunately I had run out of challenges and couldn’t do anything.”

Ostapenko, still only 21, was looking to recover from a poor China Open performance hampered by a wrist injury, but instead endured a miserable evening in Hong Kong.

She said her 28-year-old opponent had played like she had “nothing to lose”.

“Today she was playing at a very high level but of course it was not the best match and I made a lot of unforced errors.”

Earlier, France’s number two Alize Cornet swept into the second round of the Hong Kong Open Monday — helped by a “home” crowd.

The eighth seed brushed aside Israel’s Julia Glushko 6-1, 6-2, to record her first victory in more than a month after a string of first round exits in Chinese tournaments.

But the 28-year-old credited her change in fortunes with the support of her compatriots at the Victoria Park venue.

“Whenever I play in Hong Kong I feel at home because there’s a lot of French people here, there is a big French community and I can feel it when I’m on court,” she said.

“I always feel the support from them but also the people from Hong Kong.”

She added she had “zero expectations” at her third outing in Hong Kong and discounted any notion that US Open champion Naomi Osaka’s withdrawal from the event would boost her chances.

“Today I finally won one after a month and a half which feels good,” Cornet said.

“I enjoyed my time on the court, it really felt as if it was nice to be here.”

She added: “(Osaka’s) out but there are many, many other good players … so I don’t think it influences things.”



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Three Hong Kong Cricketers Face ICC Corruption Charges


Three Hong Kong Cricketers Face ICC Corruption Charges


The International Cricket Council (ICC) charged three Hong Kong players. © Twitter


The International Cricket Council (ICC) announced Monday it had charged three Hong Kong players, including one who has already served a 30-month ban, with 19 counts of breaching the ICC Anti-Corruption Code in matches played between 2014 and 2016. Irfan Ahmed, who was banned from all cricket for two-and-a-half years in April 2016 after admitting breaches of the code, will face nine charges, while Irfan’s older brother Nadeem Ahmed and Haseeb Amjad each face five charges, the ICC said.

The players have been provisionally suspended with immediate effect.

Irfan ended his previous ban only in May this year, having been found guilty of failing to report requests to fix matches between January 2012 and January 2014.

Hong Kong is one of 92 associate, or non-Test playing, ICC members, making it a second-tier team and a minnow on the international stage.




Topics :

Hong Kong Cricket



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Naomi Osaka Pulls Out Of Hong Kong Open With Back Injury


US Open champion Naomi Osaka has pulled out of this week’s Hong Kong Open to prevent aggravating a slight back injury, organisers said on Sunday. The Japanese star required treatment to her lower back during her semi-final defeat to unseeded Anastasija Sevastova at the China Open in Beijing on Saturday. Afterwards, Osaka, who turns 21 on October 16, said it was more a case of fatigue than anything more serious, but suggested that she may not make the WTA Hong Kong Open, which starts on Monday. 

“Unfortunately, I have been playing through pain in my back this whole week,” the world number six said in a subsequent statement released by organisers.

“The doctors have advised me that I need to rest to ensure the injury is not further aggravated and become more serious.” 

The world number six, Osaka made headlines last month when she stunned Serena Williams in New York to win her maiden Grand Slam, in a final overshadowed by the American’s bitter row with the chair umpire.

One player who does appear set to play in Hong Kong is China’s Wang Qiang, who is in the form of her life.

Wang was well beaten by world number two Caroline Wozniacki in the China Open semi-finals, going down 6-1, 6-3, and has been carrying a thigh injury.

“I’ll try my best because I will definitely face the same situation in the future,” the 28th-ranked Wang said, asked if she would compete in Hong Kong.

“I cannot give up easily.”

 



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