KHMUinfo <2>Incheon St. Mary's Hospital Receives 'Obstacle to Gender Equality Award' on March 8 2016 International Women's Day

by 선전홍보실장 posted Mar 12, 2016


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KHMU INFO <2> March 12, 2016

Incheon St. Mary's Hospital Receives 'Obstacle to Gender Equality Award' on March 8 2016 International Women's Day

The hospital fires female union district head for protesting against bullying and unjustified human rights violation

Incheon St. Mary's Hospital received the 'Obstacle to Gender Equality Award' on Saturday, March 5 at the Korean Women's Rally that took place on the occasion of March 8 International Women's Day



Hong Myeong-ok is organizing a daily one-person rally in front of the hospital


'Obstacle to Gender Equality Award' is a mock award given annually by a group of 30 women organizations called 'Korean Womens' Association United (KWAU)' since 1997 to groups, individuals, and policies that hindered the advancement of gender equality. Laureates of this award include politicians accused of sexual harassment or molestation; institutions, individuals, and policies that obstructed the advancement of gender equality; TV programs that commercialized women; and legal practitioners whose rulings hampered the promotion of gender equality.



Incheon St. Mary's Hospital received the award due to their 'unreasonable management practices and bullying of a female union district head.' Although it is a hospital managed by the Catholic Church, St. Mary's Hospital's reputation is disgraced by receiving such an award. On the other hand, the Incheon St. Mary's Hospital Union District, led by Hong Myeong-ock, which retaliated against the hospital's preposterous actions received Model Group for Gender Equality at the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions' Women Workers' Rally held on March 5.


When media reported a series of fraudulent health insurance claims perpetrated by International St. Mary's Hospital operated by Catholic Church's Incheon Diocese, Incheon St. Mary's Hospital called out the union district head as informer and started to bully her around. The hospital ultimately fired her after spreading vicious and false rumors about her.


Ever since it was taken over by the Incheon Diocese of Catholic Church, Incheon St. Mary's Hospital has been continuously persecuting the trade union who impedes their policy bent only on making profits.


Incheon Diocese, the operator of the two hospitals, has been turning a blind eye on the hospitals' illegal practices. On top of that, they have been completely ignoring the cries of the citizens in and around Incheon demanding the cessation of unlawful actions and normalization of the hospitals. The truth is now slowly emerging from the surface. A series of investigation conducted by the Ministry of Health and Welfare (MHW) uncovered the International St. Mary's Hospital's forgery of medical documents to file bogus insurance claims worth KRW 200 million. This type of illegal activities has never happened before in an university hospital, and the MHW is known to be taking administrative actions against the hospital.


On a side note, Incheon St. Mary's Hospital's mid-level manager was even fined for turning on an amplifier with an intention to disrupt a peaceful rally organized by the Korean Health and Medical Workers’ Union.


Civil society groups in Incheon and the district head of Incheon St. Mary's Hospital, Hong Myeong-ock, are organizing a daily one-person rally in front of the hospital, demanding reinstatement of unreasonably fired workers. 


The Korean Health and Medical Workers’ Union led by the chairperson Yoo Ji-hyun, the Civil Society Group Alliance for the Normalization of Incheon and International St. Mary's Hospital, and the Incheon Coalition of Women Organizations held 'Obstacle to Gender Equality Award Ceremony' in the afternoon of Tuesday, March 8, the International Women's Day, in front of the Incheon St. Mary's Hospital. They also informed the public about the hospital's winning of the award during the Incheon Women Workers' Rally held at 18:00 at the Bupyeong Station Square.


Korean Health and Medical Workers’ Union will continue its struggle side-by-side with other civil society groups to end Incheon St. Mary's Hospital's policies that place profit over everything, to increase hospital workers' basic rights, to guarantee trade union activities, and to enhance women workers' rights.



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