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Home >> China
UPDATED: 19:48, March 28, 2006
China's gov't makes commitments to migrant workers
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China's State Council issued a special circular on March 27 addressing the issue of the working condition and livelihood of the country's some 120 million migrant workers.

The salary payment on a monthly basis or in accordance with the labor contract is placed at top priority. Employers that have the record of salary default misplace must have a compulsory special account of salary deposits in security.

Units which award construction contracts are obliged to put the funds agreed in the contract in place. Those failing to do so will not be granted license or will face penalties.

To solve the problem of poor salaries and unequal salaries for the same work, the minimum salaries must be carefully defined, adjusted, and strictly implemented. Overtime should be paid.

Work safety training and protective equipment must be offered to newly recruited migrant workers. Regular medical check-up must be provided for those workers facing potential damage to their health at work. Migrant workers engaged in highly dangerous jobs or special operation must receive special training for a certificate showing their qualification for the job.

The "Sunlight" program facilitating the labor transfer from rural areas to urban areas should be carried on. Migrant workers enrolling in training programs will get subsidies.

Modern means such as radio and TV broadcasting and e-learning should be given full play in passing on to farmers basic knowledge needed for urban jobs. Upskilling programs should be designed catering to farmers in poverty-stricken areas. Relevant policies are needed to encourage migrant workers to acquire professional qualification certificates.

Employers must offer and pay for insurance covering industrial injuries. Aftermath should be properly handled after such injuries plus compensation. Employers are still responsible for paying migrant workers that suffer on-the-job injuries even if they are not included in the insurance mentioned above.

Special funds for medical insurance should be put in place to help migrant workers in urban areas pay for their hospitalization. Employers are the main source of the funding. Migrant workers can be included in the basic health care insurance system for urban workers where conditions are available.

The pension insurance scheme for urban employees will also take care of migrant workers wherever possible. Rules should be formulated to make sure that the insurance is effective when migrant workers move to other places.

Local education budget should fund the enrollment of migrant workers' children in public schools in urban areas where they receive equal treatment in their compulsory education. Any extra charges violating the national regulations are not allowed.

The circular requires enterprises or industrial parks employing migrant workers offer dormitories for them.

Employers and individual migrant workers can be covered in housing provident fund, which used to be available only for urban workers.

It is illegal to reclaim land of farmers who work in urban areas. However, the land cannot not be laid idle. Rearrangements in forms of sub-contract, transfer, and leasing of the land tenure should be made on a voluntary basis in compliance with law. Returns on the transfers must be defined and guaranteed. Any limit or seizure of the returns by any other organizations or individuals is prohibited.

By People's Daily Online

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