South China province reviews law on wage negotiation

21:32, July 21, 2010      

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South China's Guangdong Province Wednesday reviewed a draft of the country's first law that sets the rules for labor disputes and wage negotiations amid efforts to ease labor tensions after a string of strikes and worker suicides.

One of the major purposes of the revised draft Regulation on the Democratic Management of Enterprises in Guangdong is to establish a legal-binding wage negotiation mechanism. Among the Regulation's 83 articles, 25 concern wage negotiation.

The relevant union should organize wage negotiations between elected worker representatives and the employer when more than one-fifth of the workers demand a pay rise, according to the draft law.

If the employer refuses to hold or join a wage negotiation, the workers would be entitled to stop working and the employer should not fire them for doing so, the draft reads.

Workers who had previously gone on strike said this regulation was "particularly important."

"Currently, we are not protected by laws like this. Companies often fire striking workers without giving any compensation. In the future, our rights will be better protected," said a worker who declined to give his name.

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