Opinion / Opinion Line

Low wage leads to seasonal lack of workers

(China Daily) Updated: 2015-01-30 08:22

Low wage leads to seasonal lack of workers

A restaurant owner tries to recruit new staff at the Hufangqiao Job Market in Beijing earlier this week. He holds a sign detailing pay and conditions: a monthly salary of 2,500 yuan ($410) with free meals and living accommodations. WANG JING / CHINA DAILY

In the run-up to the Lunar Chinese New Year, which falls on Feb 19, the lack of laborers and service staff has already hit metropolises and big cities as migrant workers start to go home for their family reunions. Comments:

Since the mid-1990s, a trend of disdain for physical labor and vocational education has gradually gained popularity in China, which has resulted in many young people choosing to stay at home rather than go to a vocational school or take a job as a laborer; many vocational schools have even closed down due to lack of students. Now society is paying the price for its past prejudice and we hope that lessons can prevent similar follies in the future., Jan 29

Everyone is equal in theory, but in reality enterprises treat blue-collar workers differently from their white-collar colleagues, which has resulted in a lack of a sense of belonging. The enterprises that first realize this and take measures to retain their valued blue-collar workers will have the advantage in future competition.

Hebei TV, Jan 23

Experts attribute the lack of laborers to the fact that migrant workers go home for family reunions, but that fails to explain why most white-collar workers, who also work far away from home, stay in offices until a few days before the Lunar New Year. It is low pay and lack of welfare that prompts many blue-collar workers to give up one month's salary in favor of going back to their families. Enterprises might need to raise wages for blue-collar workers in order to get them to stay.

Worker's Daily, Jan 28

Many of today's young migrant workers do not identify themselves as part of the industrial sectors they are engaged in, which is unlike their parents' generation. With better skills and updated knowledge, they cherish high expectations for working and living conditions and have much less stable careers., Jan 23

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