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Young China Series: Migrant worker helps others lead better lives

10-08-2012 08:55 BJT Special Report:Young China |

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In today’s National Day Special YOUNG CHINA, we go to the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone in Southern China to see how a migrant worker helps her less fortunate fellows. The new generation of Chinese migrant workers is trying to make the most of city life for themselves and others.

More than 200 million migrant workers have left the country for China’s cities. Most live as the underclass. It’s not easy for them to keep up with the beat of big cities. These girls are different. Vicky Ye is one of them.

Vicky was born in a small village in Central China’s Hubei Province. The 29-year-old is now an HR manager for the Shenzhen office of a Hong Kong based company. She remembers her struggles in 2005.

Vicky was born in a small village in Central China’s Hubei Province. The 29-year-old is now an HR manager for the Shenzhen office of a Hong Kong based company. She remembers her struggles in 2005.

Vicky Ye, Shenzhen said, "My first few months were tough. There were times when my company didn’t pay me. I couldn’t pay the rent or buy food, so I had to plead with my landlord. I only had a few pennies left after paying the rent. It was a really hard time."

In her job, Vicky has handled cases that made her want to do something to help.

Vicky Ye said, “ I’ve dealt with many industrial injury cases; 10 cases a month, some even caused disabilities, and even 3 deaths. I often get quite emotional.”

Like Vicky, more than 60% of the migrants nowadays were born in the 1980s. They’re called the “new generation”. Different from their parents, Vicky’s generation have started to use the Internet to speak up and make themselves heard.

Vicky Ye said, “Many events got better known by people via the Internet. The more you make your voice heard and the more attention you get; the sooner a problem is solved and the closer we get to justice.”

These people were injured at work and did not get properly compensated. Many migrant workers have few rights if they have no contract. This means no insurance or protection from dangerous work. Vicky has been trying to help these people with the power of her micro blog. She posts cases online to get people to pay attention, and gives lectures to migrant workers on how to protect their legal rights. Her actions have inspired others to take action.

Vicky Ye said, “I took a worker at my factory to hospital. In the same ward there was another worker who’d lost 3 fingers. He was alone in Shenzhen and Spring Festival was approaching. The worker from my factory invited him to spend Spring Festival together though they didn’t know each other before. I was very touched.”

Migrant workers can feel isolated and helpless behind factory walls. Vicky is using the internet to help them reach beyond those walls, for more equal opportunities in their pursuit of a better life.

Looking forward to your feedback, you can contact us at coverstory@cctv.com

Editor:Wang Shuo |Source: CCTV.com

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