Rights Protection for China's New Generation of Rural-Urban Migrant Workers

Friday, 20 July 2018
Distributed Paper
Jianing CAO, Kyushu University, Japan
As the Hukou System(residence registration system) became loosened and the inter movements became easier, China has been experiencing a largest population movement in the world. Moreover, as the structure within rural-urban migrant worker group changed, the new generation migrant workers who were born after 1980 have become the main part of the migrant workers, and appear to have new problems and demands compared with the previous generation. Having been directly influenced by China’s rapid economic growth and recent socio-demographic policy changes, this cohort of rural-urban migrants have different migration motivations compared to their father’s generation, and demonstrate interesting migration patterns.

According to the first-hand interview data collected in March 2017 and August 2017 in Beijing rural area and Guangzhou city and combined with related census statistics of State Statistics Bureau, this paper analyses resettlement projects in relation to 1)Hukou System, which no longer prohibits rural labor migration, but still restricts migrant workers’ access to public health care, pension system, legal aid, social services, etc.2) In comparison to older cohorts, new generation of migrant workers is better educated, more aware of workplace rights, and more likely to demand employment protection and decent work, and they are supposed to rely on themselves to struggle for legal rights.