Provisional Legislative Council
Panel on Home Affairs

Family Status Discrimination (Proceedings by
Equal Opportunities Commission) Regulation


This paper seeks Members�views on the proposed contents of the Family Status Discrimination (Proceedings by Equal Opportunities Commission) Regulation (FSD(PEOC)R) to be made by the Secretary for Home Affairs (SHA) to empower the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) to bring proceedings under the Family Status Discrimination Ordinance (FSDO) in its own name.


2. The FSDO was enacted in June 1997. It has not yet commenced operation. For the effective implementation of the FSDO, the EOC should have power to bring and maintain civil proceedings.

3. Under section 67 of the FSDO, SHA may make regulation to empower the EOC to bring civil proceedings as if the EOC were a person claiming to be a victim of discrimination under the FSDO. Such regulation shall be subject to the approval of the Provisional Legislative Council. It is proposed that the regulation to be made under the FSDO should be modelled on the Sex Discrimination (Proceedings by the Equal Opportunities Commission) Regulation (SD(PEOC)R) which came into effect on 20 December 1996. The EOC will have similar powers to bring proceedings in its own name under the FSD(PEOC)R as currently provided for under the SD(PEOC)R. The Regulation

4. Like the SD(PEOC)R, we propose to include the following provisions in the proposed FSD(PEOC)R-

  1. Circumstances under which the EOC may bring proceedings
    The EOC may bring proceedings before a court in its own name where (i) the case raises a question of principle; and (ii) it is in the interests of justice to do so, and it appears to the Commission that the claim of the person is well founded.
  2. Remedies which the Commission may seek in such proceedings
    Any remedy available to a claimant under section 54(3) of the FSDO (including a declaration, an injunction or both) should be obtainable by the EOC.

Legislative Timetable

5. We intend to submit the FSD(PEOC)R to the Provisional Legislative Council in October, so that the FSDO can be brought into operation in November 1997.

Advice Sought

6. Members are invited to comment on the content of the FSD(PEOC)R proposed in paragraph 4 above.

Home Affairs Bureau
September 1997

Last Updated on 24 October 1997