Luxury condo prohibiting maids from using passenger elevators draws flak from CBCP and other groups
Discrimination, policy, or a policy that illustrates discrimination?
On November 19, Poch Ceballos posted a photo of a letter from the management of Icons Residences that has now gathered nearly a thousand shares. The caption reads:
When Filipino maids in HK get banned from using the "regular" elevators (you know, the ones that "regular" people use), the country throws a hissy fit. Guess what? It’s happening in our own backyard! Dear #iconresidences, fuck you. Katherine Garrido, you’re an ignoramus. Please resign. You have no place being a building administrator.
The subject of Ceballos’ ire was the management’s request to owners and tenants, asking them to tell their household employees (drivers, maids, et cetera) not to use the passenger elevators. The letter also informed the owners and tenants that the guards have been instructed to direct the help to the service elevator. On November 21, the letter became a topic in Aquino & Abunda Tonight and the hosts slammed the management’s policy.
On November 26, Reverend Father Jerome Secillano of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines Episcopal Commission on Public Affairs also expressed his disappointment for the policy. "Grabe, kung ang isang katulong nasa 33rd ang unit ng kanyang amo, palalakarin mo siya sa hagdanan. Nasaan naman ang makataong treatment dito?" he said.
It’s worth reiterating that there is a service elevator for the help, but Abunda explained, "Parang alam niyo po, Miss Garrido, sa aking pag-aaral, parang bumalik ho tayo dun sa black slavery movement, kung saan naaalala ko po yung Jim Crow laws, kung saan equal but separate."
Amid the criticisms, Katherine Garrido’s sister Annette came to her defense via a post on Facebook, with these passages:
The team of Aquino and Abunda castigated my sister as if she had committed murder for sending out a memo implementing a policy that is implemented in condominiums, hotels, hospitals etc. ... A service elevator is no different from a guest or passenger elevator. ... A well-dressed couple in americana and evening clothes will be annoyed if a construction worker hauls his paints and brushes with matching ladder into the elevator with them, right? And how would you feel if you rode a hospital elevator and they wheel a corpse in? ... These policies and procedures are implemented by the condo board and management, not one person alone. I’ve been talking to several condo dwellers and I’m compiling a list of condo buildings, hotels and hospitals that have that policy too.
It would be very interesting to see Annette Garrido’s list.