Elizabeth Lui, Assistant Research Officer of CCPL, published an article “A Response to Infinger v Hong Kong Housing Authority — Same-sex Couples’ Unequal Access to Public Housing in Hong Kong” in the Hong Kong Law Journal.
Elizabeth Lui, Assistant Research Officer of CCPL, published an article “A Response to Infinger v Hong Kong Housing Authority — Same-sex Couples’ Unequal Access to Public Housing in Hong Kong” in the Hong Kong Law Journal. On 4 March 2020, the Court of First Instance gave judgment in Infinger v Hong Kong Housing Authority, allowing the application for judicial review against the Housing Authority’s policy to exclude same-sex couples from eligibility to apply for Public Rental Housing (PRH) as “Ordinary Families” under the “General Application” category (the Spousal Policy). Specifically, the Court observed that there was “a dearth of evidence” on the impact of the differential treatment under the Spousal Policy on the advancement of the “Family Aim”, which is to preserve family formation constituted by heterosexual marriage. Neither were there sufficient materials to conclude that the Spousal Policy made any “significant or real difference” to the overall availability of PRH to traditional families. The Court also held that a fair balance had not been struck between the Spousal Policy and the protection of equality for lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) persons. In response to the judgment, this article reviews quantitative evidence to demonstrate that the differential treatment under the Spousal Policy did not significantly advance the Family Aim, and that the Spousal Policy imposed a severe economic penalty on LGB individuals in Hong Kong. The data analysis presented buttresses the Court’s ruling that the Spousal Policy failed the third and fourth limbs of the proportionality test.
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