According to media reports on Thursday (February 29), China vows to eradicate wage arrears and illegal arrangements for overtime work, to effectively safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of workers.

The effort was emphasised in a recent joint notice issued by the Supreme People’s Procuratorate and the All-China Federation of Trade Unions, aiming to prevent and resolve conflicts and disputes in the labour field, and promptly correct illegal employment practices.

The notice requires the play of the supervisory functions of the procuratorial organs and the role of the trade unions in discovering and investigating hidden risks in the labour field, further improving the quality and effectiveness of cooperation between the two entities, to promote the implementation of labour laws and regulations, and safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of workers.

The notice specifies the scope of application, including internal rules and regulations of employing units related to the interests of employees; labour contracts, labour remuneration, social insurance, welfare benefits, working hours, and rest and vacation systems.

Safety production, prevention and control of occupational diseases, as well as protection of special rights and interests of female workers, minors, disabled workers, and elderly workers are also covered in the notice.

In addition, the notice applies to the protection of the legitimate rights and interests of dispatched personnel, as well as the termination of labour contracts in violation of relevant laws and regulations.

The procuratorial organs should consult with the trade unions promptly on the labour employment violations discovered or obtained, in an attempt to promote the resolution, according to the notice.

If it involves the rights and interests of specific groups such as new forms of employment workers, women, minors, disabled, elderly workers, or group disputes such as social security arrears, withholding of migrant workers’ wages, and the employing units do not cooperate, the trade unions above the county level can transfer the relevant clues and materials to the procuratorial organs, who shall initiate legal supervision procedures per the law.

The procuratorial organs may make procuratorial suggestions to relevant units and departments to promote lawful administration in the following cases: frequent and widespread illegal employment cases occurred in a time in a certain area; obvious loopholes are exposed in labour employment management supervision; or there is a need to urge the industry competent authorities to strengthen and improve management and supervision.

According to Beijing Daily on January 23, in a case detailed in the yearly working report by the Beijing High People’s Court, an employee successfully won a lawsuit against her employer and received compensation for working via social media applications during off-duty hours. The case caught great public attention and was hailed as a typical example of the strength of the country’s judicial system. – Global Times


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