By Margaret CHUNG (Jockey Club Academy Hall)

Have you ever found the food that you placed in the common room’s refrigerator gone? I have. I was stunned when I found all my food gone, including a pizza, a pack of sausages and a box of cakes. The most shocking thing was that all the packing of my food was left inside the fridge.

It seemed like someone had taken my food intentionally. I was upset not just because of losing my food but also because of their disrespect to both themselves and me. We have learnt not to steal others’ things since we were young. All of us are adults and are able to distinguish right from wrong. After receiving education for over 15 years, we should know that stealing things from others is both immoral and illegal.

Most people realise that taking away others’ property, including food from the fridge, may constitute a theft, which is a serious criminal offense in Hong Kong. All residents, by the mere fact that they are in Hong Kong, are subject to the jurisdiction of the Hong Kong laws. The victims whose food is stolen have the right to report the case to the police.

However, we do not want to see our halls become courts for screening potential offenders. Most people who have taken away others’ food from the fridge do so for convenience without seriously thinking of the interests and feelings of others.

Here are some possible ways to deal with the matter:

  • Pack your food properly with your name and room number written clearly over the packing.
  • Pay attention to what food you put in the common room’s fridge and when you take food out of the fridge.
  • Convey these messages and build up trust among your floor residents at your floor meetings.
  • Pay attention to people, especially strangers, entering your common room. Check regularly to see if your food is missing. Report at once to your Residence Tutor when food is missing.

It needs everyone’s effort to create a harmonious living environment.