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Social Security to Cover Migrants

Shenzhen's employees including migrant workers will get more employment services when the labor bureau releases its new labor and social security card in May.

The Shenzhen Municipal Labor and Social Security Bureau announced Monday it would release the new card which offered more services to more workers.

"The biggest draw of the new card is improving the city's employment service system," said Xu Shaoying, vice director of the bureau. "The current card only covers people who work for government and large enterprises. It fails to secure the interests of all the working people in Shenzhen, particularly migrant workers," Xu said.

Xu said the new card would cover groups like migrant workers, unemployed residents with Shenzhen hukou and farmer-turned-residents after urbanization, a first for major Chinese cities.

The current card, which took effect in 1996, includes the pension, medicare, work injury, unemployment, maternity insurance and housing accumulation fund.

The new card lets the bureau look at employment information and unemployment registering.

"The new card will enable the bureau to effectively track the individual's employment record and monitor the companies or enterprises' social insurance payment, which particularly helps protect migrant workers' interest," said Huang Shaoqiang, vice director of the city's social insurance fund administration.

The old card holders can get the new service without getting new cards.

Card holders can apply for a new card at different social insurance services by paying 10 yuan (US$1.2). More than 3 million people have old cards but the bureau expects to release 1 million new cards this year.

(Shenzhen Daily April 12, 2005)

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