Jasic Workers Solidarity Group

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The Jasic Workers Solidarity Group (Chinese: 佳士工人声援团) was a student-led labour movement in the city of Huizhou, Guangdong, China, which protested against labour conditions at a factory owned by Jasic Technology, a welding machinery manufacturer, from July to August 2018.[1][2] The group of students and disgruntled workers sought to legally form a labour union; the dispute came to be known as the Jasic incident. Their efforts were, despite initial signs of support, opposed by the All-China Federation of Trade Unions, which rarely engages in collective bargaining and has been described as 'ineffective at representing workers'.[3] Unions in China are legal only if they are under the ACFTU. Hence, the Federation's opposition constituted a legal excuse for suppression of the JASIC unionists and their student allies.[4] The movement consisted mostly of left wing students of Peking University and has been characterized as Maoist,[5] feminist,[6] and socialist.


In January 2018, the initially American-based Me Too movement began to gain popularity within Chinese academic circles.[7][8] Yue Xin, a student at Peking University, began a campaign against Professor Shen Yang over allegations of rape and sexual misconduct in 1998, which led to the suicide of a female student.[9][10][11][12][13]

In September 2018, workers at the JASIC factory in Huizhou, Guangdong attempted to form a union in protest to poor labour conditions and inadequate pay. The news of workers' protests spread through Chinese social media, leading to a group of forty students to travel to Huizhou to protest in solidarity with the workers. Members of the group have characterized themselves as Marxists and Maoists.[5][14][15][16][17][18]


  • Yue Xin: #MeToo activist at Peking University
  • Zhang Shengye:
  • Chen Kexin
  • Zhang Yunfan: Marxist activist
  • Liu Penghua: One of four Jasic employees who attempted to form a labour union.[19]
  • Li Zhan: Former Jasic employee who supported unionization[20]
  • Mi Jiuping: "Worker-Poet" and one of the central union organizers at JASIC.[21]
  • Yu Juncong: Jasic employee who supported unionization and the author of the first open letter to Jasic Technology.[22]


Cornell University announced that it would no longer be co-operating with Renmin University of China after the crackdown on student activists.[5] Human rights organization Amnesty International released a statement condemning the suppression of the striking workers and the detention of student activists.[23]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Two Chinese trade union officials arrested after helping workers: source". Retrieved 9 December 2018.
  2. ^ Hernández, Javier C. (11 November 2018). "Young Activists Go Missing in China, Raising Fears of Crackdown". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  3. ^ "Effort to Form Union in China Meets Ferocious Repression". Retrieved 9 December 2018.
  4. ^ "China: JASIC workers' struggle reveals rising class tensions". Retrieved 9 December 2018.
  5. ^ a b c Hernández, Javier C. (28 September 2018). "China's Leaders Confront an Unlikely Foe: Ardent Young Communists". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  6. ^ Li, Audrey Jiajia (9 May 2018). "Opinion | The Price of Saying 'Me Too' in China". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  7. ^ Hernández, Javier C.; Zhao, Iris (24 April 2018). "Students Defiant as Chinese University Warns #MeToo Activist". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  8. ^ Hernández, Javier C.; Mou, Zoe (24 January 2018). "'Me Too,' Chinese Women Say. Not So Fast, Say the Censors". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  9. ^ Kuo, Lily (24 April 2018). "Student says Peking University trying to silence her over rape claim petition". The Guardian. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  10. ^ "深圳佳士维权: 中国社媒审查与致习公开信". BBC News 中文. 23 August 2018. Retrieved 1 January 2019.
  11. ^ Lau, Mimi (10 August 2018). "Chinese Maoists join students in fight for workers' rights". South China Morning Post. South China Morning Post. Retrieved 31 December 2018.
  12. ^ 苒苒 (28 December 2018). "高压下崛起的中国左翼青年". BBC News 中文. Retrieved 1 January 2019.
  13. ^ 潘毅 (17 August 2018). "观点:深圳佳士工人维权的两大意义". BBC News 中文. Retrieved 1 January 2019.
  14. ^ "International News: Latest Headlines, Video and Photographs from Around the World -- People, Places, Crisis, Conflict, Culture, Change, Analysis and Trends". ABC News.
  15. ^ "Police raid student group as support for Shenzhen Jasic workers grows". China Labour Bulletin. 24 August 2018.
  16. ^ Chen, Michelle (4 September 2018). "China's Workers Aren't Fighting a Trade War—They're Fighting a Labor War". The Nation. Archived from the original on 22 January 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2018 – via www.thenation.com.
  17. ^ "Shenzhen Jasic Technology: the birth of a worker-student coalition in China?". Hong Kong Free Press. 1 September 2018.
  18. ^ Hioe, Brian (31 July 2018). "Dozens Arrested After Worker Protests In Shenzhen". New Bloom Magazine.
  19. ^ "Jasic Detainee #4: Liu Penghua: We Need a Union, Not Just Rights Defense - Labor Notes". labornotes.org. 26 November 2018.
  20. ^ "Jasic Detainee #2: Li Zhan: Standing with Workers through Thick and Thin - Labor Notes". www.labornotes.org. 18 November 2018.
  21. ^ "Jasic Detainee #1: The Story of Worker-Poet Mi Jiuping - Labor Notes". www.labornotes.org. 5 November 2018.
  22. ^ "Jasic Detainee #3: The Story of Yu Juncong: Always Standing Against Injustice - Labor Notes". labornotes.org. 19 November 2018.
  23. ^ "China: Thirty people detained at factory worker protest must be released". www.amnesty.org. Archived from the original on 20 June 2021. Retrieved 26 November 2018.