Release Xiangzi and Chinese Labor Activists

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Vincent PRÉSUMEY
Vincent PRÉSUMEY signed this petition

*Please note that we are NOT asking for any donation. Change.org is soliciting donation which does NOT at all go to the arrested labour activists.

We are friends of Chen Weixiang, known to us as Xiangzi, a committed and tireless advocate for the rights of sanitation workers. He was taken into custody along with two associates from his home in Guangzhou on December 17.

The news is deeply upsetting to us who have seen his devotion to workers' rights, and worrying for the future of labour rights in China.

Growing up in a rural family with his siblings working as migrant workers, Xiangzi was always sensitive to social injustice. He began his labour activism while still in college in 2011 by supporting striking sanitation workers on his university campus.

He has devoted his life to protecting sanitation workers' rights and dignity.

A sanitation worker organizer said of Xiangzi and his activism:

“[Xiangzi's online labor support platform] was becoming popular with sanitation workers around Guangzhou. They had helped people get a lot of money that they were owed. He was doing the work the government is supposed to do – helping workers get what is owed to them by law. But it seems that, in the eyes of some people, this is not acceptable”.

We don't know where Xiangzi and others are, or how long they will be held. We have been given no reason for their arrest. We fear they will be tortured, detained for weeks and months, or even sentenced.

We have such fear because they are merely the latest of more than 100 Chinese labor activists and workers have been arrested since late 2018 in waves of crackdown on labour activists. Many remain detained to this day with little access to families and lawyers.

This is unacceptable.

We need to push back against the criminalisation of Xiangzi and all other arrested labour activists in China. Their work and commitment are key to creating a more just and equal Chinese society.

We invite you to join us in calling for:

  • the disclosure of their location;
  • their access to families and lawyers;
  • their right not to be tortured;
  • their release.

Please share this petition on social media with your friends.

*Please note that we are NOT asking for any donation. Change.org is soliciting donation which does NOT at all go to the arrested labour activists.