Two weeks ago, when we told you that China’s new labour law was going to be a big, big thing, we had no idea it would also be the cause of some serious blood-letting. Local gangs and triads have been attacking the Shenzhen Dagongzhe Migrant Worker Centre which has been instrumental in providing legal advice for rural migrant workers and informing them about their rights under the new labour law. In separate attacks, they shattered the glass door and destroyed all computers and equipment in the centre. Apparently, in one attack, patrolling policemen did nothing to stop the attack.
One labour activist has been seriously injured:
On 20 of November, the victim, Huang Qing-nan, was chopped by two criminals on his back, waist and leg when he left the center to visit another injured colleague in the hospital. The cuts were up to 10cm in length. His left leg suffered the most serious injury, bones and tendons, blood vessels and nerves were cut apart. He was sent to the intensive care unit and then transferred to the orthopedic ward. It is very unlikely that Huang can fully recover from the injury as he has once suffered from serious burnt from an industrial fire and such medical record makes the treatment more difficult.
A coalition of civil organisations in Hong Kong have held a joint press conference and demanded for the central government and the Shenzhen city government to:
1. Openly condemns & investigates all violent incidents, and in particular the attack on Huang Qingnan;
2. Helps DGZ Centre to re-start its works and provides Huang Qingnan with appropriate medical treatment and rehabilitation;
3. Implements the national policy to maintain a harmonious labour relations, improves the protection of civil groups and their staff in order to prevent violent acts and maintain public security.
Hospitalisation and treatment for Huang Xing-nan is estimated at HKD200,000 (USD30,000). An appeal for donations is being managed by a group called Worker Empowerment, which is one of the organisations in the above-mentioned coalition:
Bank A/C Name: Worker Empowerment
Bank A/C no.: 227-9-090365
Bank Code: 024
Bank Address: 83 Des Voeux Road, Central, Hong Kong
Swift Code: HASE HKHH