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Will the New Year see a resumption of collective bargaining in China?

In December 2009, a magazine article exposed the extent to which labour relations in China had deteriorated over the last year, with enterprises deliberately taking advantage of the government's leniency during the global financial crisis to exploit their workforce. The writer called on the government and trade unions to take concerted measures, including the introduction of collective bargaining, to alleviate the growing conflict between workers and management.


Will the New Year see a resumption of collective bargaining in China?

As the Chinese economy recovers, an influential magazine calls on the government and trade unions to take concerted measures to alleviate the growing conflict between workers and management. Photo. Onekel

Death imitates art in China’s coal mines

The similarities are chilling. In the multi-award winning movie Blind Shaft (盲井), two miners trick young migrants into working with them as their “relative” before killing them and extorting compensation from the mine boss. In a case reported by the domestic Chinese media on 26 December, a group of criminals murdered at least 17 young men in coal mines across the country before demanding compensation from their bosses.

China Daily year-end lists highlight the role of workers in 2009

As the year 2009 and this decade (the “aughts”?) comes to an end, various “best of” lists are floating around on the Internet, and the China Daily has compiled an interesting series of lists on its website. Besides being a year that saw many cultural and scholarly giants pass away, 2009 will probably also be remembered as a year in which workers and common netizens started to use proactive and exceptional means to defend their rights – a trend CLB noted in our report- the Workers' Movement in China (2007-2008). And 2009 will probably also be remember as a year in which various local governments had their credibility challenged like never before.

A Sexual Harassment Case in Guangzhou and More

William Nee and Geoff Crothall discuss a sexual harassment case in Guangzhou, an American company that is threatening to pull out some of its business operations from Shenzhen due to unpaid wages, and a sharp increase in labour disputes in Beijing.  (Music by Dick Gaughan).

Festive cheer for migrant workers?

New announcements from the State Council and the Shanghai government seem to offer some measure of cheer for migrant workers in the New Year, however, as with all government pronouncements, the devil will be in the implementation of the detail.

Trade union recommended sacking sexual harassment victim

The Guangzhou federation of trade unions is investigating why a trade union official at a Japanese owned company in the city recommended that a victim of sexual harassment be sacked. The 28 year-old office worker (Ms A) was dismissed in January this year after complaining about the blatant sexual harassment of her Japanese boss, which was caught on camera.

Justice eventually for hotel worker dismissed with no compensation after two decades of service

Hotel employee, Zhu Peifang was summarily dismissed after 24 years of service, with no compensation, no year-end bonus and no wages for her work the previous month. With the help of CLB, Zhu was reinstated and paid six month’s wages in arrears.


SASK: Collective bargaining key to taming China’s labour disputes

During the last decade China has been hit by a wave of wildcat workers strikes, the fundamental cause of which, according to Han Dongfang, is the lack of Chinese workers to engage in collective bargaining with their employers.

SCMP: Quest for profit, shroud of silence

At 1.50am on November 21, a safety officer in the Xinxing coal mine in Heilongjiang noticed a sharp swing on his instrument that measures underground gas. He sent an alarm, advising evacuation of the 528 men at work. Forty minutes later, an explosion rocked the mine, leaving 104 dead and 65 injured. It was the worst coal-mine accident in China since 107 were killed in the Hongtong mine in Shanxi in December 2007.
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