Some of the world’s biggest companies have got behind a lesbian in Hong Kong trying to get a partner visa.
Simply known as QT, the English woman is in a civil partnership with, SS, a woman who got a job in Hong Kong. But because Hong Kong does not recognize same-sex marriages, QT was not eligible to get a dependent visa.
The couple battled the Immigration Department for years in the courts. They eventually won a landmark High Court case in September last year.
The celebrations were short lived when the Immigration Department announced it would appeal the High Court decision.
But now some of the world’s biggest banks and law firms are getting behind the woman’s case.
Anti-discrimination leads to better talent
Amnesty International, along with 15 financial institutions and 16 law firms will seek to have a say in the appeal.
In a joint statement they said not recognizing same-sex couples was preventing Hong Kong from attracting the best overseas talent.
‘The policy significantly diminishes their ability to attract and retain the world-class talent that is crucial to maintaining and enhancing Hong Kong’s status as a leading legal services centre in Asia-Pacific and globally,’ the statement read.
The court must still approve whether the companies can have a say in the court case on 5 June.
‘It’s a challenge for some of our members who want to bring senior staff to Hong Kong but can’t because they are in same-sex relationships,’ Jacinta Reddan, chief executive officer of the Australian Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong and Macau, told Bloomberg.