State Council's inter-agency task force briefing on ensuring services and supplies to people who stay put during the Spring Festival holiday

The State Council's inter-agency task force held a press conference in Beijing on Wednesday to brief the media about the circular on how to ensure services and supplies to people who stay put during the Spring Festival holiday. January 28, 2021

Economic Daily:

Migrant workers who choose to stay for the Spring Festival holiday are likely to face some inconveniences in their work and life. How can we ensure that those people can celebrate the festival in the place where they work? 

Zhang Ying:

Thank you for your question. Workers staying behind for the festival will help reduce the chances of the virus spreading, but some difficulties and problems may arise. We need to provide essential supplies and thoughtful services to make their festival comfortable and happy. As required by the circular on ensuring services and supplies to people who stay for the Spring Festival holiday released by the General Office of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party and the General Office of the State Council, we will implement the special action plan of "providing support and stabilizing employment during the Spring Festival" to guarantee the legal rights, such as correct salaries and leave, and interests of people who choose to stay put. The Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security will work with the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the Ministry of Civil Affairs, the Ministry of Transport, the State Council Leading Group Office of Poverty Alleviation and Development of China, the All-China Federation of Trade Unions, and the All-China Women's Federation to seriously implement the decisions and deployments of the Party Central Committee and the State Council, and further implement the special action plan. We will do this by rolling out four major measures to provide care for workers who stay put, companies who resume operation, and those rural migrant workers who return to work after the Spring Festival. The four measures include:

First, we will provide wholehearted support. We will work to ensure that people who stay where they work can still enjoy a festive atmosphere. We will offer guidance for local governments to organize various forms of group activities to celebrate the Spring Festival and offer assistance. We encourage companies to give bonuses for people staying on the job. By offering this support, we hope the workers can enjoy a happy new year. 

Second, we will enhance policy support so that people can keep their jobs. For those who choose to stay, there must be proper work and arrangements. We will encourage and guide companies to take into account the production needs and willingness of the workers to reasonably arrange work, stagger employees' leave or holiday for working extra shifts, and effectively protect the legal rights and interests of workers, such as their salary and leave. At the same time, we will further enforce policies such as refunding unemployment insurance premiums to help enterprises maintain stable employment and reduce layoffs. Policies will be implemented to help enterprises retain workers' posts and salaries.

Third, we will stabilize production and retain workers. We will strengthen labor dispatch mechanisms for key firms such as those engaged in the production of medical supplies and daily necessities. We will create temporary work such as anti-epidemic and disinfection tasks and community services as needed, to balance labor demand and supply. We will strive to ensure that those who want to work can contribute to the fight against the epidemic in the city where they reside. We urge companies to pay for workers according to the law if they work during the Spring Festival.

Fourth, we will provide excellent services to support people who stay put during the Spring Festival. We will provide "131" services to job seekers in need, namely: one session for career guidance, three pieces of suitable job information, and one training program recommendation. We will hold several job fairs across various sectors and types of work. Additionally, unemployment insurance benefits and temporary living allowances will be given in time to people eligible for unemployment benefits. Wholehearted services will be offered to better meet the needs of workers during the Spring Festival.

Recently, many places have rolled out a series of measures to encourage workers to stay put. For example, subsidies and consumption coupons will be offered to workers who stay where they work in regions such as Tianjin, Shanghai, Jiangsu and Zhejiang. Meanwhile, in Anhui, Guangdong and other regions, free admission to scenic spots will be offered and trips will be organized to enrich people's lives during the holiday. In Tianjin, Fujian, Guangxi and other places, the government will support and reward enterprises if they maintain full capacity, stabilize employment or recruit workers. In Hunan, Gansu and other major labor exporting provinces, Spring Festival gifts will be given to left-behind families to reduce migrant workers' worry about their loved ones at home.

We will summarize and promote the exact measures across various regions in time and implement the necessary action so that those people who stay put can enjoy a happy and healthy Spring Festival. Thank you.

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