Warning on dumpster: 'Entry forbidden for humans and animals, Violators at their own risk', as response of Chinese officials to the five boys' dumpster death last month in Guizhou    

 

One month after the five boys' dumpster death tragedy, officials in Bijie of Guizhou attribute the children's death to the street dumpsters and take counter measure: paint warnings on all the street dumpsters: 'Entry forbidden for humans and animals; violators are at their own risk.' ...More

 

Fri, Dec 21, 2012 02:41 AM | Cascade view | views: 586

Boys' dumpster death,No entry for humans and animals,Left behind Children,Bijie of Guizhou
The picture of the dumpster in Bijie city of Guizhou province, in which five homeless boys, having not enough clothes to keep warm, were suffocated to death when they kept burning charcoal to keep warm inside on the rainy and cold night of November 16, 2012.

By Bernd Chang

 

The deaths of five boys in a dumpster in Bijie city, Guizhou province, last month has heightened concerns over the plight of China’s homeless children.

The five boy having no enough clothes took a dumpster as refuge to keep warm on a cold rainy night in Bijie city. An official investigation reported that they kept a fire burning inside the trash box to keep themselves warm, but died from carbon monoxide poisoning instead.

One month after the tragedy, officials that had been criticized for ignoring the plight and poor livelihood of children in their jurisdiction, after thoroughful introspection, attribute the boys' death to the street dumpsters and take counter measure: paint warnings on all the street dumpsters: “Entry forbidden for humans and animals; Violaters are at their own risk.”

But to their disappointment, their counter measure has not only deeply disappointed the public, but earned them new wave of condemnation, just as the criticism of their indifference to the miserable livelihood of homeless children has waned down.

“Kids don’t read well; animals are illiterate – only our government can read the slogan. They should be the ones entering the trash bins!” said one Weibo user named @胶东县令

“Bijie: what is more dirty than the dumpsters is our officials' slacking at work” said @TV哇哇.

“No entry for humans and animals. How can you compare humans and animals! It is more like new version of 'No entry for Chinese and dogs‘“, said @叶雨打个酱油

“Dumber than a pig,” cursed a Weibo user.

On the afternoon of Dec. 19, after report on the dumpster warnings has led to public outcry, authority in Bijie took a quick investigation into the matter. According to the official Xinhua report, a total of twelve dumpsters, all located in Heguantun town, have been painted with the slogan. Town mayor Gao Dan openly apologized in response to public outcry.

“I sincerely apologize for the improper words on our town’s trash cans that hurt everyone’s feelings. We will rectify our fault immediately,” he said.

The livelihood of left-behind children in rural Guizhou is worse than most Chinese can imagine

The sequential incidents in Guizhou highlighted the predicaments of China’s millions of left-behind children. A widening wealth gap and rising living costs are driving increasing numbers of poor rural parents to look for jobs in remote large cities, leaving their children behind.

According to statistics of Chinese ministry of education, as many as 58 million Chinese children are left-behind children, one or two of whose parents are working in remote areas. Among the 58 million children, 22 million have none of their parents at the side. Some of these children, due to lack of care and tutelage of their parents, end up as vagrant or homeless children.

Bijie City is a mountainous territory in the northwest of Guizhou Province in southwestern China. Guizhou is one of the poorest hinterland provinces of China. 80 percent of its territory is mountains and hills. As many as 70% of the population live on hills with very poor transportation conditions. The rapid development of China during the last three decades has changed Guizhou a lot, but compared to coastal areas of China, the change is minimal, especially for those living in rural Guizhou.

It often rains in winter and it usually takes a dozen days following a rain for the muddy road to dry up. Though the temperature in winter is higher than northern China, the high humidity make people feel even colder than in the north of China.

But it is the indifference and slacking attitude to children care of the Guizhou officials that chill the Chinese nation.
Boys' dumpster death,No entry for humans and animals
Chinese officials paint warnings on street dumpster: No entry for humans and animals, enter at your own risk! in Heguantun Town, Bijie city, Guizhou province, Dec. 19, 2012, as a response to the last month tragedy that five homeless boys were suffocated to death when burning charcoal to keep warm in a dumpster in Bijie on the rainy night of November 16, 2012.
Boys' dumpster death,No entry for humans and animals
A typical countryside village of Guizhou. Guizhou is a mountainous province in southwestern China. The natural conditions in Guizhou is very poor with 80% of its territory covered with hills and mountains. The rapid economic development of China during the last three decades have changed Guizhou only a little, especially for those living in rural areas.
Boys' dumpster death,No entry for humans and animals
70 years old Mrs. Yang carries her granddaughter and stands in front of her "home" - a drafty hut in Bazong village, Shuiqing Town, Bijie city, Guizhou province, December 2012. The sons and daughter-in-laws of Mrs. Yang also live in the village, but without enough room to live, Mrs. Yang and her husband have to live in the hut next door to the houses of their big family. And when their sons are busy they take the responsibility of caring for the grandchildren.
Boys' dumpster death,No entry for humans and animals
Mrs. Yang carries her granddaughter and takes care of the other two grandchildren in her drafty hut while her husband has gone out to cut firewood which is used for cooking and keeping warm.
Boys' dumpster death,No entry for humans and animals
The humid and chilling weather on hills cuts through the thin clothes of the child.
Boys' dumpster death,No entry for humans and animals
Playing all the day in the muddy roads and village grounds which are the only playground for the left-behind children of Guizhou, it is not supprising at all that the children look dirty all over their bodies.
Boys' dumpster death,No entry for humans and animals
Government buildings of Bijie city, Guizhou province. Sure communist Chinese civil servants can not work in the same condition as those left-behind children live. Comfortable working environment is a must for "serving the people", no matter it is in poor Guizhou or prosperous Shanghai.
Boys' dumpster death,No entry for humans and animals
Two children extend their head to look what is going on outside from their earth houses, Laodong village, Bazhai Town, Bijie city, Guizhou province, Dec. 2012. Laodong village is one of the many Miao minority communities. In the village of about 100 households, most of the young adults have gone to cities as migrant workers, leaving mostly children and seniors living there.
Boys' dumpster death,No entry for humans and animals
Two children have lunch in front of their classroom in Nishu primary school, Laodong village, Bazhai town,Bijie city, Guizhou province, Dec. 2012. Nishu primary school is the only school in Laodong village. Currently 66 children are studying there, elder children have to walk five kilometers for middle school in town of Bazhai.
Boys' dumpster death,No entry for humans and animals
A school girl squats down to write on her textbook lying on the "desk" in the classroom of Nishu primary school, Laodong village, Bijie, Guizhou, Dec. 2012. Nieshu primary school is consisted of two earth rooms. There is no electricity and the students can only depend on the natural sunlight from the drafty windows to learn Chinese and science.
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Past coverage: Boys' dumpster death   No entry for humans and animals   Left behind Children   Bijie of Guizhou  

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