ABC Radio: CCR CSR Discusses China's New Guidelines on the Protection of Left-Behind Children

There are approximately 62 million left-behind children in China today, with an estimated 2 million children left to fend for themselves without any adult supervision whatsoever. While a spate of tragedies involving left-behind children have made national headlines over the years, no official measures have been introduced to protect this vulnerable group, until now. 

On February 4th, Chinese authorities issued a new proposal to protect China’s left-behind children. The new guidelines will give greater responsibility to local governments, village committees, education authorities and schools to ensure the children are properly looked after, and that the number of left-behind children drops over the next few years.

The Executive Director of CCR CSR Ines Kaempfer, recently spoke to ABC Radio’s Patricia Karvelas on the new guidelines. Download the audio from the interview here.

New Guidelines at a Glance:

What does the new proposal suggest?

  • Mandatory report mechanism: the community authorities (including schools/kindergartens, hospitals, social service organizations as well as staff of these organizations and institutions) shall report to the police station as soon as there is indication of a child’s disappearance, domestic violence,  injury, abuse of child, or the fact that parents lose the capacity to guardianship etc.
  • Intervention of guardianship: where the left behind children in rural areas are found suffering from domestic violence, abuse, or abandonment by guardians, the competent PSB will take measures to criticize and educate the guardians; when necessary, the guardians will be subject to administrative penalty and even criminal penalty. The parents’ guardianship will be revoked by the court and new guardians will be appointed accordingly.
  • Encourage migrant parents to take their children with them to their city of work

While details of how the new guidelines will be implemented remain vague, it is reported that the Ministry of Civil Affairs will take the lead in the first half of this year by conducting a nationwide survey on left-behind children. It is understood that this survey will pave the way towards developing an effective reporting mechanism and information management system.

Helping Migrant Parents with Left-Behind Children via WeChat

In 2015, CCR CSR launched an innovative WeChat-based eLearning platform that educates, comforts and motivates workers with left-behind children.

The platform features an array of interactive, eye-catching content developed both by CCR CSR and UNICEF, that has one overarching goal: to help migrant workers better balance the demands of working far away from home with being good, involved parents. From a business perspective, the platform can help foster a happier, more focused workforce with the potential of reducing turnover. Our studies have shown that workers with left-behind children are often distracted at work, make mistakes frequently and are less loyal due to the urge to return home to look after their children. By addressing the challenges these workers face and providing tips on how they can be a better parent from a distance, this platform can help both workers and factories struggling with recruitment difficulties, high turnover and low worker morale.

Featured content:

-       Comic lessons

-       Animated videos

-       Quizzes

The platform is absolutely free to access and all you have to do is scan the QR code and follow the account. New lessons are published on a weekly basis and the platform targets not only parent workers, but line managers and young workers too. You can help by sharing this WeChat QR code with your suppliers/network and encouraging employees to sign up. 

More info on CCR CSR's WeChat platform can be found here

Thursday, February 18, 2016