CLW Labor News Brief for July 2015

A shoe factory collapsed in eastern China. (Photo credit: AsiaOne

More than 1,000 workers in Chongqing went on strike to protest poor benefits and wage theft. LINK
(kannewyork, 07/15/2015) More than 1,000 workers from Kenfa Technology (Chongqing) Limited Company in Wanzhou District, Chongqing City, went on strike on July 14, to protest wage theft and housing fund contribution arrears by the company. Striking workers also blocked traffic.
Dissatisfied with their wages, more than 100 employees of the Zaozhuang Long Distance Bus Terminal went on strike. LINK
(DZW 07/05/2015) Starting at 2pm on July 15, all ticket windows at the Zaozhuang Long Distance Bus Station were closed as more than 100 employees carried out a sit-in in the rider waiting area. According to interviews with employees, they refused to work because they were dissatisfied with low wages and poor benefits.
A company is “blacklisted” after two worker deaths. LINK
(GMW 07/10/2015) Due to two fatal accidents on January 1 and July 1, Laoshan Glass Limited has been placed on the safety production blacklist. The company’s credit will be limited as a result in the coming year.
An unlicensed chemical factory in Botou burst into fire, causing the death of a worker. LINK
(Henan News Web, 07/10/2015) Around 9pm on July 8, a small chemical factory in Doutun Village, Botou City suddenly burst into fire. Dark smoke, strong flames, and continuous explosions were observed on the scene. Not until 1am on July 9 was the fire put out by the firefighters from both Cangzhou and Hengshui. A factory worker died on the scene. The owner of the factory was later held by local police. The cause of fire is still being investigated.
2,000 workers went on strike to protest unpaid wages by their factory. LINK
(Radio Free Asia, 07/01/2015) Workers from a toy factory in Luoning City, Henan Province went on strike on Tuesday (June 20) to protest unpaid wages over several months. The factory stopped paying its workers regularly since the end of last year. Workers only receive a part of their wages from the factory to cover their living expenses. However, the management of the factory has denied workers’ accusations.
First-generation migrant workers are already old. What is going to happen to them? LINK
(China News Weekly 07/20/2015) For first-generation migrant workers in China, unpaid pension contribution arrears by factories have made their lives in old a struggle. Facing the impending challenges of caring for themselves in old age, many of them choose to fight for their legal right to receive a retirement pension, only to find both employers and the government agencies charged with enforcing pension laws shirking their responsibilities. It is likely that first-generation migrant workers in China will face a long struggle before their future financial needs are met or recognized.
Foreign media reported an increase in death from overwork among Chinese employees; some wear masks to reduce stress. LINK
(Sina News, 07/23/2015) Foreign media expressed their concern for the excessive overtime and death from overwork phenomenon in China. It was further pointed out that sacrificing workers’ health for the sake of accelerating economic growth would undoubtedly have further negative social consequences.
A summary of collective labor events during the second quarter of 2015 LINK
(ILABOUR.NET, 07/23/2015) A summary of 17 workers’ strikes in China between March 28 to June 12. These strikes are workers’ way to protest legal violations of the factory management, including unpaid wages, unpaid social insurance, and other grievances.
Six in ten Chinese workers suffer chronic diseases: survey LINK
(ECNS, 7/15/2015) Data from the 2015 Chinese Employees Health Condition and Medical Benefits Report shows that nearly 60 percent of Chinese employees suffer from chronic diseases, with work-related stress being the leading health risk.
China’s migrant worker crisis and the children that are left behind LINK
(, 7/15/2015) The recent suicides of four “left-behind” children in Cizhu Village, Bijie city, Guizhou province in China highlights a crisis among China’s migrant workers.
Eleven dead in Chinese building collapse, three missing LINK (FOR ENGLISH) LINK (FOR CHINESE)
(AsiaOne, 7/5/2015) Eleven people died after a shoe factory collapsed in eastern China, state media reported Sunday, with more than 40 escaping on their own or being rescued.
China detains 50 human rights lawyers. LINK (FOR ENGLISH) LINK (FOR CHINESE)
(World Magazine, 07/13/2015) The Chinese government summoned or detained about 50 human rights lawyers across the country Friday and Saturday, the largest crackdown of its kind in the last decade. By Saturday evening, 28 people had been released, according to Amnesty International.
Chinese company seeks to punish unplanned pregnancies. LINK
(The Telegraph, 07/03/2015) A Chinese company plans to demand its employees seek approval before getting pregnant and fine those who conceive a child without permission, provoking a media firestorm.
At Multinationals, Chinese Factory Workers Strike for Layoff Compensation. LINK
(Labor Notes, 07/02/2015) Big strikes broke out in May at two plants in China owned by multinational firms—the German-owned auto parts manufacturer ZF TRW, which is headquartered in Michigan. Both plants had seen orders decline in recent months, as China’s economy slows. Managers were trying to pressure workers to resign so that the companies wouldn’t have to pay proper compensation for layoffs.
Gay government workers find it hard to come out due to workplace conservatism. LINK
(Global Times, 07/05/2015) LGBT government workers in China have said they continue to find it very difficult to come out at work due to the conservative nature of government offices.
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