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China’s migrant workers protect their rights with toil and trouble – part 2

The activist    
维权人士

     
Mr Wu describes his 371 days in detention as “a kind of hell” in which he was held in a small room with as many as 50 other people. His trial in Shenzhen was attended by activists from across the country. Adding to the case’s sensitivity, strikes at multinational employers such as Walmart and IBM erupted while Mr Wu’s verdict was being deliberated in the spring of 2014. The Walmart dispute also involved demands for higher compensation after the closure of an outlet in Changde, Hunan province.

吴贵军将其被拘留的371天称为“如同地狱一般”,他与多达另外50人被关在一个小房间内。他在深圳出庭受审时,全国各地的维权人士前来旁听。让此案变得更加敏感的是,2014年春,正当法院在斟酌对吴贵军的判决时,沃尔玛(Walmart)和IBM等跨国企业爆发了罢工。在湖南常德门店关闭后,沃尔玛劳资纠纷也涉及员工要求更高的赔偿标准。
     
Labour activists thought they detected the invisible hand of the Communist party’s Politics and Law Committee, whose branches extend all the way down to county level, in the court’s ultimate decision to throw out Mr Wu’s case and award him compensation of Rmb74,455.99 ($12,000). He has since used the money to establish his own labour rights group in Shenzhen.

劳工维权人士认为,在法庭最终决定撤诉并向吴贵军支付7.445599万元人民币(合1.2万美元)赔偿金的过程中,他们发现了中共政法委这只无形的手,这个部门自上而下,一直延伸到县级。吴贵军利用这笔赔偿金在深圳开办了自己的劳动维权机构。
     
The Walmart case has degenerated into a year-long stand-off, with all arbitration and court rulings going against the workers. Of the closed store’s 140 original employees, all but nine have given up and accepted compensation.    
沃尔玛劳资纠纷案已陷入长达一年的僵局,所有的劳动仲裁以及法庭裁决都对员工不利。在被关闭的常德门店最初的140名雇员中,除9人外,其余人都已放弃努力,接受了赔偿。
     
Local officials barred the Financial Times from attending the latest hearing on March 26, and State Security Bureau agents briefly held two activists who travelled to Changde for the proceedings. “Many people who had wanted to come for the hearing, including lawyers and scholars, were told not to,” says Cheng Huihai, one of the activists.    
地方政府官员禁止英国《金融时报》旁听3月26日的最新一次庭审,国家安全局人员短暂扣留了两名前往常德旁听庭审的维权人士。其中一名维权人士陈辉海表示:“很多之前希望出席庭审的人(包括律师和学者)都被告知不要来。”
     
It was not Mr Cheng’s first such experience with the party’s legal and security apparatus. “The Politics and Law Committee knows everything about me,” he says candidly. “They even knew who had invited me for dinner. It was as if they had been sitting at our table.”   

这并不是陈辉海第一次与党的司法和安全部门打交道。“政法委对我的情况知道得一清二楚。”他坦率地说,“他们甚至知道谁邀请我吃晚饭,就好像他们也在饭桌上一样。”
     
Like most petitioners, Mr Zhang is not on the radar screens of organs as powerful as the State Security Bureau and Politics and Law Committee. He has been regarded as more of a local nuisance — albeit a surprisingly persistent and effective one. In April the 52-year-old former construction foreman, who has worked on sites as far away as southern Hainan island, reached a provisional settlement with Foxconn.    
和大多数上访者一样,张广德不在国安局和政法委这种强大机构的关注范围内。他在更大程度上被视为地方上的麻烦——尽管他的坚持不懈和办事有效出人意料。4月,张广德与富士康达成了临时和解。现年52岁的他以前是建筑工地上的工头,曾在海南岛的工地工作。
     
Since 2011 Foxconn has paid for most of Tingzhen’s medical bills, which can run as high as Rmb20,000 a month. But it also repeatedly sparred with his family over the location and duration of his care according to Mr Zhang, who along with his wife moved 1,600km from their home in central Henan province to tend to their son.  
自2011年起,富士康支付了张廷振的大部分医药费,每月最高达2万元人民币。不过,据张广德说,围绕张廷振的护理地点和期限,该公司也多次与他们家发生争吵。为了照顾儿子,张广德和他爱人从河南省的家乡搬到了1600公里外的深圳。
     
Mr Zhang says Foxconn wanted Tingzhen to be treated in another city where wages — and therefore compensation standards — are lower.    
张广德说,富士康想让张廷振在另一个城市接受治疗,那里的工资水平较低,因此补偿标准也较低。
     
Foxconn declined to comment on Tingzhen’s case for confidentiality reasons, but said the settlement agreement reached with the Zhangs would “ensure [Tingzhen] has the long-term support he will require” and was “consistent with the strong commitment to [Tingzhen] and his family that we have maintained since his tragic accident”.    
富士康以保密为由拒绝评论张廷振的情况,但表示该公司与张家达成的和解协议将“确保(廷振)拥有他需要的长期支持”,“自悲剧事件发生以来,我们一直坚持对(廷振)和他的家人负起责任,(和解协议)与我们一贯的立场是一致的”。
     
The petitioner    
上访者
     

After losing a series of costly court and arbitration challenges, in 2013 Mr Zhang turned to the lowest rung in China’s justice system — he became a full-time petitioner and made multiple visits to Beijing. While in the capital he sought — and was refused — hearings with authorities ranging from the State Bureau of Letters and Calls, which administers the modern day version of the imperial petitioning system, to the Communist party’s anti-graft office.    
在输掉一系列费用高昂的官司和仲裁之后,张广德在2013年转而诉诸中国司法体系的最底层——他成为了一名全职上访者,多次去北京上访。在首都,他曾尝试向许多部门反映问题,从国家信访办(现代版喊冤制度的管理者)到中纪委,但都被拒绝。
     
Mr Zhang would arrive in the capital by train or bus. Often penniless, he slept rough near Beijing’s South Railway Station or would share a cheap room with other petitioners. But he was able to sell both his literacy and his growing legal knowledge. “When times were really difficult and I didn’t have any money, I would write letters for other petitioners in exchange for a meal,” he says.    
张广德一般坐火车或大巴来北京。往往身无分文的他,一般就在北京南站附近随便找个地方睡下,或者与其他上访者合住一个廉价房间。不过,他能够凭自己的文化和日益增长的法律知识混口饭吃。他说:“日子特别难过、一点儿钱都没有的时候,我会帮其他上访者写信,换一顿饭吃。”
     
On his most recent trip in November, Mr Zhang was picked up by police after attempting to bring attention to his son’s plight in a resort area where global leaders including US President Barack Obama were gathering for their annual Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation summit and later in Tiananmen Square.    
去年11月,他最近一次去北京的时候,包括美国总统巴拉克?奥巴马(Barack Obama)在内的世界各国领袖正聚集在北京参加一年一度的亚太经合组织(APEC)峰会,他先是在会议所在地景区、然后又在天安门为儿子的遭遇申冤,结果被警察带走。
     
As an officially registered “temporary resident” of Shenzhen, Mr Zhang was deemed the responsibility of the Shenzhen government. It dispatched three policemen to escort him on a flight back to the southern manufacturing centre. It was the first time in his life that Mr Zhang had flown on a plane.    
张广德有深圳的暂住证,因此对他的处置被视为深圳市政府的责任。深圳方面派了3名警察来京,押送他搭乘航班回深圳。那是张广德生平第一次坐飞机。
     
Upon leaving the airport terminal in Shenzhen, Mr Zhang fled from his police escort. “One of them chased me for about a kilometre but then gave up,” says Mr Zhang. He was not, however, subsequently detained. Instead, both police and the petitioning office in the Shenzhen district where Tingzhen was injured helped facilitate Mr Zhang’s successful settlement talks with Foxconn.    
离开深圳机场航站楼的时候,张广德从押送自己的警察手中逃跑了。张广德说:“其中一个警察追了我大约一公里,然后就不追了。”不过,他后来并未被拘留。相反,张廷振受伤所在地的深圳某区警方和信访办协助安排张广德成功与富士康谈成了和解。
     
When his settlement with Foxconn is finalised, Mr Zhang intends to take Tingzhen back to Henan.    
张广德打算,等到与富士康达成的和解协议最终敲定,他就把廷振带回河南。
     
“For more than three years I haven’t been able to do anything else,” he says. “I spend my days petitioning and my nights reading and writing about the law. When this is done, I will continue to study labour law. I would like to be a lawyer.”    
“3年多以来,我什么别的事儿也干不了。”他说,“我白天上访,晚上读法律方面的书、写法律方面的东西。等这事儿结束以后,我会继续学习劳动法。我想当律师。”

2016-06-24

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