The Honghe Daily made a public announcement regarding brief summaries of career highlights of 27 government officials of the Honghe Prefecture in Yunan province. One of the officials caught the eyes of the public for joining the workforce at the age of 11. Nian Peiguang, the deputy minister of the United Front Work Department of Honghe Prefecture was born in September 1969 and started working at a Peking Opera troupe in December 1980. When a reporter inquired about the fact that Nian started working at the age of 11, the Honghe government responded that Peking Opera actors need to practice Tongzigong at a young age. The Peking Opera troupe did not violate Article 8 of the Child Labor Legislation which came into effect on April 15th 1991 and was abolished on December 1st 2002. According to the legislation, literary, sports, and specialty talents companies were allowed to employ children under 16 years of age with permissions from the Department of Labor1.
The Article 8 of the Child Labor Legislation provided loopholes for the CCP to employ children in literary, sports, and specialty talents fields without the violation of the law. As a result, many tragic stories have occurred and the victims have no legal basis to fight for any damages they have been suffering. Chen Jing, a famous performer of an acrobatic troupe, received the highest honor in the acrobatics industry twice for her great performance at the age of 13 and 16. However, she later suffered from lumbar muscle strain and became handicapped due to her rigorous training and overuse of her body in early years. She joined the acrobatic troupe at the end of 8 and ended up being dismissed when she became handicapped2. This case was the tip of the iceberg. We are not able to know the destinies of the tens of thousands of children who are not as famous as Chen Jing in specialty talents fields. The CCP only interprets laws for its best interests and couldn’t care less about normal children’s lives.