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Migrant Workers in China (Essay Sample)


Assessment 3: Individual wiki
This is an individual assessment which relates to the following learning
1. Demonstrate a knowledge of major political and social events in contemporary
China and their impact on Chinese society and culture.
2. Discuss and analyze Chinese social/cultural behaviour by making cross cultural
comparisons, discussing the implications for foreigners coming into contact with
Chinese people.
3. Identify and critically reflect on behaviours of local/overseas Chinese
communities for efficient communication in a multiracial society.
Word limit: 1500 words ± 10%
Format: The progress of the students’ work will be recorded in the form of a wiki.
The final submission to Turnitin is required but no hard copy is required.
Due date: Friday 14 June 2019, before 5pm submitted to Turnitin on AUTonline.
The choice of your topic
Choose an incident scenario personal experience video clip which relates to at least
two of the learning outcomes above. Show how it demonstrates an issue of
importance for inter-cultural understanding and then research this issue in order to
critically analyze it in terms of its historical and cultural basis. Apply this analysis to your
scenario and show either how it demonstrates effective inter-cultural understanding or
how this could be improved.


Migrants in china are persons who could be residing in a certain area but are not considered during census in that area. It has been effected through the Hukou system that allows people to provide their details and thus are considered as residents of a given area (Chan & Buckingham, 2008). By the year 2015 it was reported that migrant workers formed 36% of the work force in China. In addition, those that had moved from their area to others were about 158.63 million persons and had increased by 3.4% from the year 2010. By the year 2016, two-thirds of the migrants were males (Qi, 2017). It has been estimated that by 2025 migrant will have increased by 243 million. In 2016, they were about 281 million (Qi, 2017). Most have an average age of 38 years. Recent survey shown that about 19% are above 50 years (Qi, 2017).
The current wiki has been written to assess problems facing migrants, their current situation, their history and the reforms that have taken place to reduce their problems. For the purpose of the current analysis, migrants that will be considered are those moving within the country. The analysis will try to critically analyse the migrant situation in China and the proposed reforms towards change.
The history of migrant’s trails back from 1968 during the reign of Kangxi Emperor. The government prohibited the non-eight banner which was violated resulting to high urban population by the end of 19th century (Wong, 2007). The failure rendered the system non-functional which called for reforms and thus laid a platform for the current study. Therefore, the current wiki will not only provide an analysis on the functioning of the system but will also address problems that the system brought.
Value for persons and their contribution is averaged with the resultant impact it has to a community and the nation at large. The system of use should ensure that full potential of individuals is achieved. For instance, the migrants form a huge part of the workforce. By the year 2015, it was estimated that they make 40% of the work force (Ngai & Huilin, 2010). Out of which about 39% worked in manufacturing and 17.3% in construction. The first migrants bought large tracts of land which provided huge revenue to the government. Young people migrate in search of better jobs, self-identity and self-transformation which may result to globalisation. Due to job segregation, a lot of women worked in hotels and beauty area while males were in construction. Women have played an important role in bridging the gap of rural-urban income. The migrants have been seen as a move towards an urban based economy. In recent time, they have played a critical role in economic development and towards globalisation. However, they have also led to growth of slums, increase urban poverty and crime. They are important for labour provision, have contributed to industrialisation and revolution in the country (Qi, 2017). For instance, Mr Guo a migrant doing farming in their area is able to earn an extra3, 000 to 4,000 Yuan a year (Qi, 2017). In addition, he finds that through the work he is able to earn a better life.
However, the system has depressed migrants and has caused them a wide range of problems. For instance, lack of registration into the system has led to denial of resources. In addition, they lack access to educational assistance, are excluded in social assistance programs and are highly unemployed (Wong, 2007). Due to lack of a permanent area of residence, they have been moved from place to place. For instance, they were moved from Northern China to Liao River to pave way for cultivation. In addition, their settlement in Machu was prohibited. Lack of Hukou number made it difficult for one to live in urban areas. Migrants are really absorbed into the public sector and hence are mainly self-employed or unemployed. In some states there exist dualism in the labour market, leading to inadequate social protection, job security, training and less schooling. The migrants are treated harshly and are seen as second class citizens and have problems getting their children to school Therefore, migrants are seen as inferior due to their low skills, education and experience. Consequently, there is little or no enforcement of labour right resulting to violation of labour contracts, wage payment and insurance contradictions. For instance, it has been found that only 10% of migrants sign contracts at work (Ngai & Huilin, 2010). The workers hence work more days and time as they are not aware of their rights. They also have a high disease prevalence and face high levels of inequalities in income and security. Women are disadvantaged due to the gender geared inequalities and marginalisation. Most of them are paid the minimum wages with a lot of violations. For instance, about 150 workers from Foxconn threatened to commit suicide due to poor work conditions (Moore, 2012). In Beijing, 24 school belonging to migrants are shut down (Goodburn, 2009). In addition, parents argue that they have no power to contradict the authority. Despite all this problems migrants still push through in search of employment, education, business opportunities and better living standards.
As much as we acknowledge that the system has failed and discrimination has been on the rise, the lives of workers has not improved. For instance, there were about 14 deaths in Foxconn due to poor work conditions in 2012 (Moore, 2012). Strikes have been witnessed in factories day in day out. The migrants and local residents are not treated the same. For instance, in the year 2005, the migrants in the public sector was only 12% despite forming 68% of the available workforce. 52% of the migrants were self-employed as compared to 12% for local residents. About 15% of children of the migrants have metal health problems and about 50% have depression (Jingzhong & Lu, 2011). However, there is realisation that women should not only be in the kitchen and thus currently are allowed to work in the fields. Consequently, have improved their living standards
As a result of the problems migrants face and the non-improving current situation, the government is investing on preventive measures to deal with psychological torture in children and have invented a mental health law (Jingzhong & Lu, 2011). The Hukou system has been revised with reforms including; ensuring that children in the same area have equal rights of access to school, have access to health care, access to affordable housing and elimination of discrimination (Chan, 2009). The government of china uses the Hukou system to influence settlement plan and permanent residence. Property rights and infrastructural investment is based on the system thus persons not registered are limited from access. To ease some of this problems the government relocated migrants from North China due to famine, floods and drought despite having prohibited their settlement. Later they were allowed property right on the land. The government flexed the mobility law through the house responsibility system. The government has also made great moves toward ensuring that they get good health services and insurance. However, their exposure to hazards is too high at their place of work making lack o

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