Business

The story of migrant worker inequality that got China wiped out, then erased

A large part of China’s 1.4 billion people are still poor. About 600 million people, or 40 percent of the country’s population, live on about $150 a month or less.

The same goes for Mr. Yue’s family.

Born in 1978 in central Henan province, Mr. Yue left the village in search of a better life in the city. He and his family settled in Weihai, a coastal city in eastern Shandong province, and he became a fisherman.

Mr. Yue and his wife had a happy family. Their first son was born in 2000. Ten years later, they had a second son, who had to pay about $1,500 for violating the one-child policy.

“As farmers, we don’t earn much,” his wife, Li Suying, said in a phone interview. “But we did well because we were frugal.” She posted an online photo album on her WeChat timeline in 2016 titled “A loving family”. She worked many low-paid seafood-related odd jobs while taking care of her family.

Then their eldest son, then 19 years old, went missing in August 2020. Mr. Yue and Ms. Li went to the local police station and begged the officers to help locate them by locating them. his cell phone and check the surveillance video tapes.

Police ignored their pleas and berated them when they refused to give up, according to interviews by both Ms. Li and Mr. Yue with Chinese media. An employee told Ms. Li to “shut up” and “get lost”, she said. They ignored her as she cried for days outside the police station.

“It’s not like I’ve lost something that I can give up,” she said. “It’s my son.”

Mr. Yue started looking for their son alone. He has been to many cities, including Beijing, where their son used to work at a restaurant. He did whatever odd jobs he could find along the way.

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/31/business/migrant-worker-poverty-in-china.html The story of migrant worker inequality that got China wiped out, then erased

Fry Electronics Team

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