Chinese Newspapers in Joint Call to End Curb on Migrant Workers

The Guardian reports on a rare joint appeal by 13 Chinese newspapers for the end of the hukou household registration system:

“China has suffered from the hukou [household registration] system for so long,” the appeal said. “We believe people are born free and should have the right to migrate freely, but citizens are still troubled by bad policies born in the era of the planned economy and [now] unsuitable.”

The appeal appeared to have been removed from at least one website this evening within hours, but was still available on other newspapers’ sites.

…Newspapers including the Metropolis Times of Kunming, the Southern Metropolis Daily, Chongqing Times and the Economic Observer ran the appeal in a rare co-ordinated action.

They timed their call to coincide with the annual meetings of China’s largely rubber-stamp legislature and advisory body, which begin this week, where the hukou is likely to be high on the agenda.

Officials have already pledged changes and China’s premier, Wen Jiabao, promised to push ahead with them in an internet chat yesterday. But the joint editorial urged delegates to the National People’s Congress and Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference to hasten reforms with a view to ending the system.

See also a China Daily article.

March 1, 2010 10:40 PM
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Categories: Law, Politics, Society