Stop the Violence— Defend Labour Rights Lawful and Harsh Sentence to Assailants who attacked Labour Group


Mr. Xu Zhong Heng Mayor of Shenzhen City,

Mr. Liu Yu Pu, Secretary of the Shenzhen Municipal Party Committee

Mr. Deng Lian Ji, President, Shenzhen Intermediate People’s Court

Mr. Bai Xin Chao. Procurator-General, Shenzhen People’s Procuratorate of Shenzhen City Court



7 November 2008

Stop the Violence— Defend Labour Rights

Lawful and Harsh Sentence to Assailants who attacked Labour Group

November 2007 was the “Black November” for everyone who supports labour rights. The Shenzhen Dagongzhe Migrant Worker Centre (hereafter DGZ Centre) suffered from a series of violent attacks: numerous men forced their way into DGZ Centre, smashed the facility inside and threatened the staff. Later on 20th November, the legal person (holder) of DGZ Centre, Huang Qingnan, was attacked by two assailants, which caused his left shank to be disabled permanently. As groups that promote labour rights and growth of civil organizations, we strongly condemn these violent, illegal actions against labour groups! On 3rd December, we submitted a statement endorsed by 76 Hong Kong and International labour groups to the Government of Shenzhen City, during a protest in front of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in Hong Kong, and urgently appealed for an intensive investigation into these violent attacks as soon as possible.


Eight months after this horrible attack, five suspects were finally prosecuted and brought to court, hence, we express our deep concern over the inquest. The main suspect, Zhong, is a local entrepreneur and landlord in the area where DGZ Centre is located. According to the information released, he is very influential in the community. Since he was discontented with the effort that DGZ Centre made to promote Labour Law to migrant workers nearby, he blamed the loss of rent on DGZ Centre and hired assailants to attack Huang.


The migrant workers in Shenzhen have contributed to the prosperity of the city in the last 20 years; however, they can never enjoy an equal return and status, and have to live in the margin of the society. Some of the unscrupulous factory owners ignore the law and regulation brazenly; tricks included underpayment, non-payment of overtime wages, baleful delay of industrial injury compensation, and even beating workers who attempted to reclaim their rights. However, the labour groups such as DGZ Centre, which strived to promote the laws and regulations tied in with the general policy of the Central Government in China, suffered from these violent attacks. We are indignant about these devilries of the assailants and the one who ordered them to do so behind the scene. Any modern civilized society should have zero tolerance to this evil act. While the Chinese Government is determined to stride towards the international society, we strongly believe that the Shenzhen Government has to disseminate an important message to these criminals: “Society will not patch up the guilt of any ruffian that infracts upon labour rights and civil groups by violent means!” during the hearing of this case.


Thus, we demand the Shenzhen authorities, to,

1.          In the case related to the attack against Huang, insure an impartial, open and independent hearing, and to make a reasonable an harsh sentence lawfully, hence to press down the trend of violence in order to safeguard the officers work in civil groups and uphold the justice;

2.          Ensure Huang receive reasonable and sufficient civil compensation as soon as possible, in order to maintain his living.


We also hope and expect that the Chinese Government can offer perdurable guarantee to the smooth operation of civil groups such as DGZ Centre, investigate and handle any violent action against workers and civil groups gravely, so that the international society can see her determination and concrete action against violence in the defense of labour rights. At the same time, we also hope and expect that the Chinese Government can extend and build up regular, equal channels to communicate with civil groups, in order to construct a harmonious society.


Initiated by: Asia Monitor Resource Centre; Globalisation Monitor; Labour Action China; Students and Scholars Against Corporate Misbehavior (SACOM); Worker Empowerment

Endorsed by:

1.          Noise Co-op

2.          Ziteng

3.          Hong Kong Christian Institute

4.          Neighbourhood & Worker’s Service Centre 

5.          Justice and Peace Commission of the Hong Kong Catholic Diocese

6.          Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions

7.           ITUC/GUF/HKCTU/HKTUC Hong Kong Liaison Office

8.          Hong Kong Women Workers’ Association

9.          Catering And Hotels Industries Employees General Union

10.      Clothing Industry, Clerical and Retail Trade Employees General Union

11.      Hong Kong Catholic Institution Staff Association

12.      Cleaning Service Industry Workers Union

13.      Union Of Hong Kong Dockers

14.      Hong Kong Dumper Truck Drivers Association

15.      Concrete Industry Workers Union

16.      The Federation Of Hong Kong Transport Worker Organizations

17.      Ocean Park Employees Union

18.      Construction Site Workers General Union

19.      Industrial Relationships Institutes

20.      Student Christian Movement of Hong Kong

21.      People Demo

22.      Ziteng

23.      Neighbourhood & Worker’s Service Centre

24.      Transport And Logistics Workers Union

25.      Hong Kong Buildings Management And Security Workers General Union

26.      Midnight Blue

27.      League of Social Democrats

28.      Hong Kong Christian Industrial Committee

29.      Association for the Rights of Industrial Accident Victims (Hong Kong)

30.      China Labour Bulletin

31.      Peuples Solidaires (France)

32.      Committee for Asian Women, CAW

33.      Clean Clothes Campaign- Italian

34.      Clean Clothes Campaign International

35.      Transnationals Information Exchange-Asia

36.      Maquila Solidarity Network, MSN (Canada)

37.      Fair Labor Association

38.      National Industrial Workers Union Federation, SPN (Indonesia)

39.      Council of Work- and Environment-Related Patients’ Network of Thailand , WEPT (Thailand)

40.      Northern Labour Network(Thailand)

41.      The Human Right and Development Foundation, HRDF

42.      Independent Federation of Hotel and Allied Unions, FSPM (Indonesia)

43.      Information Labour Centre, LIPS (Indonesia)

44.      Kongres of Indonesia Trade Union Alliance, KASBI

45.      Japan Occupational Safety and Health Resource Centre, JOSHRC

46.      Tokyo Occupational Safety and Health Centre

47.      Kanagawa Occupational Safety and Health Centre

48.      Bangladesh Occupational Safety, Health and Environment Foundation ,OSHE

49.      Labour Health CentreSouth Korea

50.      Coalition for Cambodia Apparel Democratic Workers Union , CCADWU

51.      National Institute of Labor Protection(Vietnam)

52.      The Institute for Occupational Health and Safety Development, IOHSD(Philippines)

53.      Friends of Women Foundation (Thailand)

54.      General Federation of Nepalese Trade Unions, GEFONT

55.      Occupational Health and Safety Center (Indonesia)

56.      Peoples Training and Research Center, PTRC (India)

57.      Taiwan Association for Victims of Occupational Injuries, TAVOI

58.      Won-jin Foundation for occupational diseased (South Korea)

59.      Macao Workers and People’s Spirit Association, MWPSA

60.      Yvonne Liu Suk Han (Hong Kong)

61.      Tam Oi Kwan(Hong Kong)

62.      Debby Chan (Hong Kong)

63.      Frankie Ng (Hong Kong)

64.      Ng koon Kwan (Hong Kong)

65.      Chow Ching (Hong Kong)

66.      Parkson Yeung Kin Bun (Hong Kong)

67.      Ivy Chan (Hong Kong)

68.      Tai Ngai Lung (Hong Kong)

69.      Kevin Lau (Hong Kong)

70.      Benny Chan (Hong Kong)

71.      Li Yiu Kee (Hong Kong)

72.      Yeung Shu Hung (Hong Kong)

73.      Yeung Kwok Hung(Hong Kong)

74.      Chan Chiu Wai(Hong Kong)

75.      Wong Yu Loy(Hong Kong)

76.      Promil Hung(Hong Kong)

77.      Parry Leung(Hong Kong)

78.      Kong Kwai Sang(Hong Kong)

79.      Au Yeung Tung(Hong Kong)

80.      Jess Chan(Hong Kong)

81.      Chan Hau Leung(Hong Kong)

82.      Prissy Leung(Hong Kong)

83.      Ban Lee(Hong Kong)

84.      Billy Hung(Hong Kong)

85.      Chow Sze Chung(Hong Kong)

86.      Leo Yiu(Hong Kong)

87.      So Sheung(Hong Kong)

88.      Li Sai Hung(Hong Kong)

89.      Hung Wai ying (Hong Kong)

90.      Chan Po Ying(Hong Kong)

91.      Chan King Chi (UK)

92.      Anita Chan Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies The Australian National University(Australia)

93.      Fergus Alexander (UK)

94.      Chloe Froissart, researcher at the School for Higher Studies in Social Sciences (France)

95.      Jean-Philippe Béja, Research Directo rat CNRS/CERI (France)