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(China Daily)
Updated: 2008-10-07 07:44

'Over-work culture' not good for workers

Comment on Liu Shinan's column "Hands off our precious Golden Weeks" (China Daily, Sept 24)

Thanks a lot for your consideration for us migrant staff. I quit teaching in Chongqing and now work as an editor in Jiangxi province.

Most of Chinese private company owners de facto value "over-work culture", which reduces the state-stipulated paid vocations to nothing but endless work. My boss often sings high praise for overwork and we have to work extra two hours every Thursday - and that too without any pay.

In my opinion, many Chinese businessmen lack social responsibility. They are just profit-driven and care little for their staff. In such cases, the government also fails to ensure legal holidays for workers who are often holiday-deprived.

I hope you submit your comment to the government and help stop such stupid reforms proposed by some experts.

David Tao

via e-mail

Legacy of the Paralympics

Nobody could deny that China vastly impressed the whole world with the outstanding staging of the recent Olympics and Paralympics. Still more impressive were the imaginative and uplifting spectacles put on for the opening and closing ceremonies of both sets of Games. It is hard to imagine that any future ceremonies could possibly outdo those.

It was also a fine thing to see disabled youngsters from across the globe push themselves to the limits to compete at the Paralympic level. Those of us lucky enough to be born able-bodied were touched and humbled by their supreme efforts.

Traditionally, perhaps, Asian families might seek to hide away a family member who is disabled, feeling uncomfortable about what they cannot do. But the very nature of these international competitions for disabled athletes seeks, instead, to celebrate what such disabled young people can do.

It is to be hoped that the recent staging of the Paralympic Games by China will help bring about a widespread change of mindset. It may help us reach a stage where our differently-abled fellow-citizens would find it easier to get decent jobs and become full members of the community, respected by all.

That could include making better provision on public transport for disabled people, and perhaps providing support to encourage large firms to take on a specified proportion of disabled employees, as part of the workforce. Providing more ready access to public buildings for the disabled is also a necessity.

Such a widespread change of mindset would be a suitable legacy for these Games, and one which would rebound to the eternal credit of China.

Paul Surtees in Hong Kong

via e-mail

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(China Daily 10/07/2008 page9)