Welfare funding review fails expectations: union

A union representing employees of social welfare organisations on Sunday said it’s disappointed by the results of a four-year review into the government’s funding mechanism, criticising it for not going far enough.

The Social Welfare Employees Union said the 82-page report, released by a government-appointed task force on Monday, failed to properly address complaints by front line staff that resources have been unevenly distributed under the Lump Sum Grant Subvention System.

The union’s chief executive Isaac Tsang pointed out that some of its recommendations are not even new.

“At least five of the recommendations already exist in the existing system,” said Tsang noting that NGOs have already been disclosing their financial positions and remuneration packages for top executives as suggested in the report.

Tsang said the report also failed to address front line staff’s call for the starting points and increments of their pay to be in line with the civil service, to reduce the huge discrepancies in wages for employees with essentially the same job nature at different NGOs.

“The front line is quite disappointed that many of our recommendations such as the review of the pay salaries and the control reserve percentage, we do not see [they were] mentioned in the report.”