Multi-racial Taiwan needs gov’t help: group

Wendy Tseng, TAIPEI, Taiwan, Special to The China Post

Huang Nai-huay, chairman of the Foreign Wives Association, yesterday called on the government and society to help the families of “New Taiwan’s Children.” In light of the Chinese Father’s Day on Sunday, Huang said that the fathers of “New Taiwan’s Children” face a number of troubles, such as supporting their families and caring for their children’s education. “It is two days before Father’s Day, and the fathers of ‘New Taiwan’s Children’ are not happy,” Huang emphasized. “New Taiwan’s Children” refers to the descendants of international marriages, which are usually between Taiwanese men and women from Southeastern Asia. Such marriages have been growing in numbers over recent years. “The fathers take on a huge responsibility. Why can’t the government help their wives find jobs…to lessen the fathers’ workload?” Huang said in a press release yesterday.

Many spouses from these “New Taiwan’s Children” families have difficulty finding jobs in Taiwan, Huang said. As a result, their husbands have to take on extra responsibility for the family income. Henny Maria Heng, who came from Indonesia to Taiwan seven years ago, has applied to be an English teacher at kindergartens. For the past few years, she has only found a few temporary jobs. She has taught kindergarten for one semester and is currently a home tutor. “It’s very hard to find a job here,” she said. “I feel that the employers always look down on me.” “When they look at my face and see that I am from Indonesia, they reject me,” Heng said. “They don’t ask to see how well I teach.

“Instead they immediately say, ‘We’re sorry. We’ll contact you in the future.’But they never called back~.”

Heng received a college education in Indonesia. At the press conference yesterday she held up an Indonesian certificate that qualifies her to teach at high school in her home country. However, Heng has not taken any tests in Taiwan that certify her as an English teacher. Heng wants the government here to help solve her employment problem. “I only have one request: give me a chance to find a job,” she said. Premier Yu Shyi-Kun has proposed to create a NT$3 billion program to help these families for ten years. Huang hopes that the proposed project will pass.