National People's Congress
Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference
Deputies in Brief
Meeting Agenda
The Ninth National People's Congress begined from March 5, 2002.
The CPPCC begined at the Great Hall of the People from March 3, 2002.
CPPCC Members Call for Protecting Migrant Workers' Rights
Members of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) National Committee now meeting in annual session stand firmly behind the massive number of city workers coming from rural areas, calling for strong measures to protect their rights and interests.

"The government should help create an environment friendly to rural job hunters in cities and see to it that their rights and interests are well protected," said CPPCC member Wu Mingxi.

"Urban residents should also lend a hand to help them better used to city rules and life," he said.

His views were echoed by many other CPPCC members.

Statistics show that more than eight million peasants have entered cities over the past 20 years and these peasant-turned workers have played a significant role in the development of rural and urban economies. But the influx of the rural surplus population has also caused a lot of problems. With the development of the market economy and the deep going of the rural reforms, the army of rural labor would reach its peak in the next five years, as some experts predicted.

But cities have to impose restrictions to check such big floods of migrant workers due to the lag of public utilities construction. Even those crashing into the cities cannot get their due treatment and social security. They are in a disadvantaged position in seeking jobs and in safeguarding their rights and interests.

In the prosperous Zhujiang River Delta, for instance, the amount of wage payment in arrears to migrant workers has exceeded one billion yuan. Such workers have to pay more than 20 billion yuan every year to get all kinds of documents to justify their stay.

"Such is the case in the Zhujiang River delta that is the earliest to open to the outside world and the highest in the level of urbanization," said CPPCC member Xu Leyi. "It is quite imaginable what the plight of such workers is in other cities."

It was learned that the central government has already taken some measures to ensure the rights and interests of the rural workers in cities. Fee collection on seven items have been scraped and the Ministry of Agriculture and six other ministries have decided to open a labor exchange that will offer equal opportunities to both rural and urban job hunters.

(People's Daily March 7, 2002)


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