The Equal Opportunities Commission is considering allowing unmarried couples to have the same employment and health benefits that married people get.
If they do this, though, small businesses will suffer. Some businesses have said they will get rid of their employee benefit schemes if this policy is passed. I agree with this.
Many companies provide financial support to their employees' husbands and wives when they have medical problems. If civil unions are included, the number of people getting benefits will greatly increase, which will be expensive for smaller businesses.
Therefore, it is clear that providing health benefits for cohabitants is not realistic for small- and medium-sized companies, because it would cost far too much money.
The government should think twice before approving this rule.
Priscilla Lau, SKH Tsang Shiu Tim Secondary School
From the Editor
Thank you for your letter, Priscilla. It seems that every time the government tries to introduce any form of benefit for workers, businesses squeal about how much it will cost.
It's a common theme which runs through issues like worker safety, limiting working hours, maternity leave, on-the-job insurance, medical benefits and so on.
It would be good if we could follow in the footsteps of countries that look after their people and still have a successful economy.
It is a bad reflection on Hong Kong if it is unable to look after its own people. If a partner becomes ill it can financially devastate a worker.
Having this kind of insurance is a good thing because it allows the employee to continue doing their job without the stress of having to find extra work to pay the bills.