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NY Times: Chinese Economy's Underside: Abuse of Migrants

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La_Serpiente Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-16-03 07:17 AM
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NY Times: Chinese Economy's Underside: Abuse of Migrants
(Mods, this deals with the labor movement)

Chinese Economy's Underside: Abuse of Migrants

HANGZHOU, China From his precarious perch 60 feet above morning rush hour, Wang Fulin watched the restless crowd below. Arms were drawing arches in air, he recalled. They wanted a swan dive. People were chanting, "Jump, jump!"

Enraged and afraid, Mr. Wang had scaled the metal frame of a billboard to call attention to his grievances. It was his first day in this bustling east coast city, his first trip outside his home province in southwest China. He had been neglected, robbed and abused. Now they wanted blood.

In the end he does not remember how he slipped. He recalls only waking up in a hospital bed with three cracked ribs, a broken hip and a shattered ego. "I told those people that I'm a good man, not a bad man, that I just needed help," he said. "But I could not believe in anybody, and nobody believed in me."

The six-story plunge was the coda of a two-day cross-country odyssey, a personal tale of desperation emblematic of the gamble every Chinese migrant worker takes, leaving family behind to live on the fringes of urban society with limited access to housing, education, medical care and the courts.


Chinese Economy's Underside: Abuse of Migrants

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