China - Support for workers’ grievances including those of migrant workers (2010)

The All China Federation of Trade Union (ACFTU) is not involved in the majority of disputes and collective actions in the major manufacturing zones where most private business is located. On the other hand, it remains high profile in efforts to claim back missing wages for migrant workers, which are a major source of discontent as well as pushing for wage increases and philanthropic work.

Though migrant workers know the existence of trade unions in their enterprises, few of them would seek assistance from the trade union in cases of rights abuse. This visible lack of assistance is one of the most crucial factors in the rise of civil society labour groups providing legal and other services for migrant workers. Some lower level ACFTU branches now offer legal aid services while continuing to avoid engagement in workers’ collective disputes at the plant level.

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