CHINA The Program for the Development of Chinese Women (1995-2000) RECEIVED MAR 14 1997 Office of Kristen Timothy DAW/DPCSD Preface The State Council of the People's Republic of China promulgated the Program for the Development of Chinese Women (1995-2000) in July 27, 1995. which stipulates the tasks and major objectives of the development of Chinese women in the coming 6 years and puts forward the measures related as well. The following is the full text of the Program. Forward 1. Women are a great force in creating human civilization and propelling social development. The development level of women is an important index of social development and an important yardstick to measure social progress as well. To promote the progress of Chinese women is the common task of governments at all levels, the relevant departments, social organizations and people throughout the country. With a view to further the advancement of women,; the Program for the Development of the Chinese Women (1995-2000) is hereby formulated (hereinafter referred to as the Program) . 2. Over the 46 years since the founding of the People's Republic of China, great achievement has been made in the cause of the Chinese women that attracts world's attention. A whole series of laws, administrative decrees and local regulations, based on the Constitution of the People's Republic of China (PRC) and taking the Law of the PRC on the Protection of the Rights and Interests of Women as their main body, such as the Marriage Law, the Inheritance Law, the Labor Law, the Law on Maternal and Child Health Care and the Women Workers and Employees Labor Protection Regulations aimed at guaranteeing the rights and interests and promoting the development of women have basically come into being; corresponding organs and institutions have been established and perfected; and powerful measures have been taken as well. In the 17 years since the inception of the open-and-reform policy, the educational level of Chinese women has been steadily rising, the number of women employed considerably shotting up, their living conditions improving with each passing day, and their status in the society and the family and their participation in the management of national and social affairs steadily raising. The broad masses of women have actively plunged themselves into the open-and-reform efforts and the modernization drive and made tremendous contributions to economic growth and social progress. All these have shown the superiority of the socialist system and laid a solid foundation for the further development of Chinese women. However, as China is a developing nation, restricted by the economic and social development level and influences of old ideas, the educational level of women and their participation in social development are not high enough; equality between men and women legally stipulated has not yet been fully implemented; discrimination against women still exists in the society; the living condition of women in poverty-stricken areas needs further improvement. The task for the development of Chinese women is still an arduous one. The world today is undergoing a historical change and international competition is getting increasingly tense. The world scale competition in economy, culture, science and technology is, in the final analysis, a competition of the qualities of the nations. The quality of women affects the quality of a nation and the development level of women so does the comprehensive strength of a nation. At a time when the 21st century is approaching, women's issue has become one of the focuses of international attention and to work for equality, development and peace with actions has become an irreversible tide of the entire international community. The Chinese government has made solemn commitment for the observance of international conventions concerning women's rights and development. 3. Under the guidance of Deng Xiaoping's theory of building socialism with Chinese characteristics, the Chinese Communist Party and the state have decided on a o^ three-steps strategy " for the basic realization of modernization and explicitly defined that the second-step strategic target shall be attained by the end of this century. The coming few years are an important period of time not only for China's open-and-reform and modernization efforts but also for the progress and development of Chinese women. In the coming few years, the task for the development of women is mobilize and organize women of all nationalities in the country to plunge into the open-and-reform and socialist modernization efforts, comprehensively improve the quality of women, safeguard the rights and interests of women in accordance with the law and further enhance the status of women. On the other hand, the broad masses of women should display the spirit of self-respect, self-confidence, self-reliance and self-improvement and work to attain their own progress and development in the course of promoting social development. Governments at all levels, the departments concerned, social organizations, enterprises and undertakings should be fully aware of the importance of promoting women's participation in development, work in close coordination and take effective measures to ensure the realization of the targets set in the Program. Major Targets 4. The general target for the development of Chinese women by the end of this century is: quality of women as a whole shall be markedly improved and equal rights of women stipulated by law in political, economic, cultural, social and family affairs shall be further realized in the course of all-round participation in economic construction and social development and in management of state and social affairs. The specific targets for the development of women are: ( 1 ) Enhance the degree of women's participation in decision-making and management of state and social affairs. To have women in government leading posts at all levels and a comparatively big increase of female responsible members in government departments. To select and provide more women leading members in those trades, departments, enterprises and undertakings where women workers constitute a majority. (2) Organize women to take an active part in the open-and-reform and modernization efforts so as to promote the development of social productivity. To increase the number of women in employment and expand the areas of their employment in the course of establishing a socialist market economy, adjusting the urban and rural industrial structure, and developing with great effort tertiary industry. To guarantee women's equal right with men in employment by prohibiting the refusal to employ women on account of sex, or the raising of standards to employ women, with the exception of those jobs and posts unsuitable to women as stipulated by the state. (3) Guarantee women's right to labor To implement conscientiously the Labor law of the PRC and relevant regulations on labor protection of women workers, protect women's safety and health in work and to improve their working conditions by all enterprises (including joint-ventures, private and township enterprises). To carry out equal pay for equal work for both sexes in the city and countryside. To cover in the main child bearing expenses of women workers in urban areas by social collective fund. (4) Develop women's education and raise women's scientific and cultural level. To increase gradually the percentage of females in receiving education at all levels and in all categories; improve qualifications of women workers in an all-round way, and actively cultivate professional female technical personnel of all kinds. To popularize in the main the nine-year compulsory education throughout the country; decrease the rates of school-age girls' drop-outs and of those who are unable to attend schools; control both rates below 2%. To wipe out illiteracy among 3 million women each year and strive to eliminate illiteracy by the end of this century among young and middle-aged women all over the country. To develop energetically vocational education, professional and applied skills training at all levels and in all categories to raise women's competence in job hunting. ( 5 ) Further improve the health of women and guarantee their access to family planning. To enhance the service ability and quality of MCH centers. To provide all women in the city and country side with health care, including good reproductive health care. To raise the coverage rate of health care and health education for pregnant and Iying-in mothers to 85 %. To raise the rate of Practicing new midwifery to 95% in the countryside. To raise the rate of rural women's hospitalization for child delivery and decrease maternal mortality by 50% on the basis of 1990's figure. To inoculate 85% of the pregnant and child-bearing age women against spasmotoxin in areas with high incidence of tetanus and eliminate the infection of tetanus by new-born babies. (6) Promote the establishment of civilized, harmonious and stable families with equality between husband and wife. To carry on the fine traditions of the Chinese nation, cultivate the socialist morale, and establish a relationship of equality, unity, love and mutual assistance within the family and between the neighbors. To advocate sharing of housework and bringing-up of children by husband and wife. To disseminate in various forms the knowledge and experience among parents on the proper way to educate their children. To oppose bigamy or taking concubines. To stop resolutely acts of interference in others' matrimonial freedom. (7) Ban effectively violence against women, criminal acts of abducting and trafficking women, and illegal activities of prostitution. (8) Pay great attention to and help the development of women in border and remote areas, poverty-stricken and ethnic minority areas. Solve in the main by the end of this century, the problem of food and clothing of poor women. To carry out productive skills training among 10 million women in poverty-stricken areas and help them acquire at least one applied skill. To have one female agro-technician or technician in animal husbandry in each village in average. To alleviate 200,000-households out of poverty and make them models for others. To develop 20,000 women-headed poverty-alleviating economic entities that will provide jobs for 800,000 poor women. ( 9 ) Improve social environment for the development of women and improve their quality of life. To advocate civil and positive view on women in the whole society and cultivate a social morale of respecting and protecting women; educate women to display the spirit of self-respect, self-confidence, self-reliance and self-improvement. To do a good job in community services and develop nurseries, kindergartens and household services . To protect the special interests of underage girls, old and disabled women, and ban the employment of girls under the age of 16. To run well all kinds of social welfare institutes and homes of respect for the aged and seniors' apartments. To set up rehabilitation centers for the poor disabled women. (10) Expand friendly exchanges between Chinese women and women of other countries to promote world peace. ( 11 ) Establish a mechanism of trend studies of women's status, -data collection and information spreading. To establish a national women's data bank. To set up classified women's statistics index in the state statistics system. Policies and Measures 5. Political rights and participation in decision-making Enhance the awareness of women on their political rights through all means to enable them to participate on an equal footing with men in the management of state and social affairs and in making-decisions on major issues. While formulating policies and projects, governments at all levels should listen to suggestions and demands of women's organizations, give full consideration to the special interests of women, and guarantee their legitimate rights and interests. Do a good job in training and selecting women cadres. It is necessary to work out plans, have them checked regularly and implemented at all levels. Strengthen the training and education of women cadres and improve their ability of leadership and in participation in politics. 6. Employment and labor protection Actively exploit areas and forms of employment suitable to women's characteristics so as to provide them more job opportunities develop job hunting and consultation services to guide those women in need. Actively develop diversified rural economy and further develop township enterprises to create more job opportunities for rural women, and organize in a planned way the flux of female labor force from poor-stricken areas to else where. Improve working conditions for women workers in private, township and foreign-invested enterprises and strengthen labor protection measures. Forbid to assign women workers jobs that females abstain from doing. Establish and perfect labor protection facilities for women workers; establish systems of regular physical and gynecological check-up for women workers; strengthen scientific research work in making products for women's labor protection and raise the level of labor protection steadily. Actively carry out labor supervision, and investigate and deal with those acts that infringe upon women's legitimate right and interest of labor in accordance with law. Resolutely curb enterprises from terminating labor contracts with women in pregnancy, lying-in and breast-feeding, from forcing women workers to engage in super-intensity labor and from violating the principle of equal pay for equal work for both sexes, and guarantee that women workers work in an environment that is not harmful to their body, mind and life safety. Units and individuals that employ girls under the age of 16 shall be punished according to law. Integrate labor protection of women workers into the production-safety responsibility system of leading members of an enterprise and take it as one of the important criteria to assess their work merits. Strengthen the publicity and education work among women workers on laws and regulations of labor protection to raise their awareness of self-protection. Reform the social security system for childbearing workers. Steps shall be taken to cover childbearing insurance fees with social collective funds instead of funds from each enterprise that child-bearing workers belong to. This reform shall gradually spread from state-owned enterprises to others. 7. Education and vocational training Governments at all levels should implement conscientiously the Rules for the Elimination of Illiteracy promulgated by the State Council. The stress should be laid on wiping out illiteracy among young and middle-aged women in remote and border areas, poverty-stricken and ethnic minority areas.. The work should be done in line with the actual condition of unbalanced economic and cultural development in each locality and guidance should be given according to each classified category. Governments at all levels should conscientiously implement the Law on Compulsory Education of the People's Republic of China and combine the popularization of compulsory education with the development of productive force and overcoming of old customs and ideas, so as to create a favorable social environment for girls' access to education. Assistance in terms of policy and funds shall be rendered to those remote and border areas, poverty-stricken and ethnic minority areas. Multi-forms of schooling such as girls' training classes should be used to facilitate the attendance of girls in poverty-stricken areas. Governments at all levels should actively help solve the actual problems of those girls who are unable to go to school because of financial difficulties. Raise step by step the percentage of females in receiving technical secondary education and higher education. In enrollment of students, the technical secondary schools and institutions of higher learning must abide by the principle of equality for both sexes, except those specialties the state has otherwise defined. Make full use of all kinds of existing adult educational and vocational schools and, in light of the need for social development and the characteristics of women, carry out multiform vocational education or training at different levels among women in the city and the countryside. 8. Health care Establish and perfect MCH centers at all levels. Strengthen the building-up of obstetrical departments in township hospitals, improve their conditions and facilities to make them capable to handle child-delivery and emergency cases. Make efforts to increase the hospitalized child-delivery rate of rural pregnant mothers and increase the rate of practicing new midwifery for rural women who stay at home for childbirth. By the year 2000, 85% of the practitioners of township MCH centers shall receive training in obstetrical emergency aid and skills, and 80% of midwives at village level in poverty-stricken areas shall be retrained. Establish a monitoring network of MCH and a regular reporting system. Set up and perfect the reporting system on maternity mortality, new-born babies' mortality and babies with discernible disability. Enforce systematic health care for pregnant and Iying-in mothers. Prevent the occurrence of common diseases of mothers, fetus and prenatal babies in pregnancy, Iying-in and puerperium. Popularize resuscitation for the new-born babies and lower the mortality rate of the early new-born ones. Increase the rate of women receiving health education. In light of the different physiological and psychological characteristics of women in their life cycle: childhood, adolescence, climacterium, menopause and old age, respective health education should be carried out among them, including scientific knowledge of sex, self-health care and child-rearing knowledge, so as to promote their physical and mental health and bring into full play the role of women in family health care. Carry out screening and prevention work of women's diseases. Emphasis should be laid on finding out and curing those diseases seriously endangering the health of rural women. Inoculate the pregnant and Iying-in mothers and women of child-bearing age against spasmotoxin in areas with high incidence of tetanus among new-born babies. Popularize knowledge about children's planned immunization among women and further reduce the incidence of relevant diseases and mortality rate. Add iodine to table salt or ask women to take iodine pills to ensure women's physical need. By the year 2000, 95% of newly married or pregnant women who need iodine shall have it. Damage to children's intelligence caused by the lack of iodine during the period of their mothers' pregnancy or breast feeding should be basically eliminated. Improve the ecological environment and decrease the damages caused by fluorine to the health of women in areas where the drinking water has a high content of fluorine by treating drinking water, diverting waterways and transforming stoves. Strengthen treatment to those patients with dental fluorosis and fluorosis of bone. 9. Family planning Carry out publicity and education work on population and family planning among the people in an extensive, deep-going and protracted way. Publicize China's basic state situation and its basic state policies among women, so as to guide them in changing their remnant ideas of marriage and child-bearing and fostering new ideas of late marriage and later births, fewer and healthier births and no discrimination against baby girls . Popularize among the broad masses of women scientific knowledge of contraception, birth control, healthier births and healthier child-rearing. Actively promote consultation on hereditary diseases, MCH and technical check-ups of the new-born. By the year 2000, the incidence of disabled babies with congenital diseases shall be cut by 50% on the basis of the 1990 figure. Improve family planning techniques. Actively study and develop new, safe, effective and convenient contraceptive pills and tools, and birth control techniques. Improve and perfect the existing contraceptive techniques and methods, reduce their side-effects and incidence of complications, promote their acceptability and protect the reproductive health of women. By the year 2000, the incidence of the complications should be controlled below 10 per 10,000. Establish and perfect the grassroots networks of family planning technical service and the supply of contraceptive pills and tools that are convenient to the masses, provide child-bearing age couples various kinds of safe, effective and convenient contraceptive pills and tools and relative technical services for their free choice. Actively give guidance in contraception and birth control so as to increase the rate of their popularization and effectiveness. 10. Legal protection Formulate practical and operational administrative decrees or corresponding policies and measures which are in compliance with the Constitution of the PRC and the Law of the PRC on the Protection of Rights and Interests of Women to make the latter and their like more feasible. Improve the quality and strengthen the contingent of judicial and law enforcement administrative personnel, enforce the leadership and exercise strict supervision to ensure an all-round implementation of the laws and decrees in defense of women's rights and interests. The acts that are not in strict observance of the law or deliberately law-breaking and infringe upon the rights and interests of women shall be brought to justice. The Marriage Law of the PRC and relevant laws and decrees shall be continuously publicized and implemented in a deep-going and protracted way all over the country, especially in rural, remote and poverty-stricken areas. Strengthen the management work on marriage registration, and take effective measures to curb such illegal marriages as early, mercenary or consanguineous ones. Protect the personal right of women and their legitimate property right and investigate and deal with in time civil cases that encroach upon the rights and interests of women. Deal severe blows to such criminal acts as abduction, trafficking, abandonment, maltreatment, persecution and insult of women and safeguard women's personal safety and dignity. Resolutely ban prostitution and eliminate social evil phenomena. -Seriously investigate and deal with accordingly such criminal acts as infanticide, trafficking and persecution of new-born female babies. Strictly forbid fetus sex identification with modern medical equipment for non-medical purposes and deal heavy blows to such unlawful acts as` sabotaging family planning. Make use of various channels and means to carry out in extensive and deep-going way publicity work on legal system to strengthen the legal awareness of the whole people; it is especially necessary to guide and help the broad masses of women to foster a solid legal concept and conscientiously apply to law to safeguard their legitimate rights and interests. Protect the legitimate rights of women to sue and appeal. Improve the work to take in and handle the complaints made by women and guard against the phenomenon of shifting responsibility to others and long delay and indecision. Develop legal consultation and provide services to help women solve their difficulties and help female victims uphold justice. 11. Improve social environment for the development of women. Publicize in society at large the prominent role played by women in creating human civilization and propelling social development; propagate that men and women enjoy equal personality, dignity, rights and status; and publicize women who possess the spirit of self-respect, self-confidence, self-reliance, and self-improvement. Curb the practice to portray the images of women in TV, movies, books, journals and the press in an insulting and depreciating way. Transform the social attitude of discrimination and prejudice against women and promote the understanding of the citizens by and large on the legitimate rights and interests of women . Protect equal status of women in the family in accordance with law and resolutely curb family violence. Strengthen cultural building-up in the family and improve the quality of family members. Continue to carry out the cultural construction in the family that integrate moral and ideological education with learning science and technology, livening up family cultural life, and promoting family economic developments; advocate a civilized, scientific and healthy way of living; and work for a turn for the better of mood of the family, the people and the society at large. Strengthen the construction of venues for women 's training and activities. Actively organize women to learn to read and write and scientific knowledge and to take part in other healthy cultural and sports activities. Continue to strengthen community services and develop nurseries, kindergartens and housework helping centers to further lighten the burden of professional women. Carry out consultation activities for women to enhance their psychological quality. Develop, manufacture and popularize products and tonics that are conducive to the physical and mental health of women. Render assistance to social welfare undertakings in the provinces and do a good job in supporting those orphaned and disabled girls and widowed or old women without legally obligatory supporters, nor ability to work, nor income for livelihood in rural and urban areas. Build new, or expand the existing and remake various kinds of social welfare institution, aged people's apartments and homes for the aged that take in the above-mentioned women and girls, and equip them with necessary living, medical and convalescent facilities . Give major effort to publicize among women the state policy of environment protection and the government's support and encouragement to women's efforts in running "ECO-agricultural projects", "March 8th green projects" and "Water and soil conservation project" etc. 12. Help develop women's undertakings in poverty-stricken areas Arrange applied skills training courses for women to enhance their capability to get rid of poverty and become rich. Develop poverty-alleviating projects that are suitable to women's characteristics. Pay special attention to the living condition of disabled women, and cultivate in society at large a good morale of understanding, respecting, caring and helping toward disabled people. Arrange properly the livelihood, convalescence, education and employment of disabled women. Organization and Implementation 13. The National Working Committee for Children and Women of the State Council is responsible for the implementation of this Program. The relevant departments of the State Council and the social organizations, in light of their respective responsibilities, should formulate specific plans for its implementation. 14. Implementation of the Program is the unshakable and important duty of governments at all levels. The people's government of each province (autonomous region and municipality under the jurisdiction of the central government) shall, in light of actual conditions, formulate its own plan for women and incorporate it to the local general plan for economic and social development and have it arranged and implemented in a unified and coordinated way. It is necessary to establish a target management responsibility system and make the implementation of the Program as part of the content to appraise the achievement of the main leading members and those in charge of this work in a province ( autonomous region, municipality under the jurisdiction of the central government), prefecture (city), county and township. 15. The governments at all levels shall gradually increase the funds for the cause of women. Strengthen and perfect the building-up of the socialized service system and support women in a better way in their economic activities in terms of material, information, technique and loans. Encourage people in all circles of society to support the cause of women. Monitoring and appraisal 16. Establish and perfect the organs of labor, education and legal supervision, sanitation monitoring and statistics appraisal, and perfect the mechanism of monitoring to ensure the implementation of the Program's general targets. 17. Strengthen the comprehensive statistics on the development of women at the national level, establish women's data bank, add the gender statistic indexes, do a good job in collecting, sorting out, feeding-back and exchanging information concerning women to provide basis for development trend forecast, plan formulation, scientific decision-making, checks and appraisals. 18. Establish a national monitoring system on women's status and formulate feasible and scientifically 21 defined plans so as to monitor women's development in an all-round and dynamic way. 19. In order to understand and assess the implementation of the Program, it is necessary to establish a system of regular examinations and appraisals so as to discover problems in time and take corresponding counter measures to handle them. In the process of carrying out the Program, it is imperative to adopt a variety of investigating methods to reflect the development and change in women's status in an all-round, systematic and timely way, and to carry out appraisals on key topics or intermediate evaluations. By the end of this century, an all-round terminal appraisal will be made, the experience in implementing the Program will be summarized and evaluated, and a program for the development of the women in the 21st century will be formulated.
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