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Hong Kong candidate rejected for living in a poor district

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It’s the duty of hiring managers to check a candidate’s background to determine if he or she is a good fit. Where the candidate attended school and where they worked are important bits of information hiring managers should pay attention to. But how about where the candidate lives?

The Sky Post reported a recruiter turned down an applicant for a position at a Hong Kong investment bank because he lives in a walk-up building in Sham Shui Po.

The case was initially shared on a discussion forum, and the writer of the post claims to be a recruiter.

“The candidate has a bachelor’s degree, is fluent in English, has a number of years of experience serving in big corporations and expects HK$40,000 a month. But there is a problem, he lives in a walk-up building in Sham Shui Po. The opening is an IT support role at an investment bank. He should be ashamed of himself (for living in Sham Shui Po),” the recruiter wrote.

As expected, the post received angry responses from netizens who think the recruiter is discriminating against the applicant. “Is living in the Mid-Levels part of the requirements for the job?” wrote one respondent.

Any sensible recruiter would not judge a candidate based on where they live. It is puzzling that anyone would think a Sham Shui Po resident is not able to fit in with an investment bank. But perhaps it’s a sign of a deeply divided society, which has been the talk of town since the Umbrella Movement.

ALSO READ: What HR can learn about candidates from their address

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