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Guangzhou Prison hosts job fair
Latest Updated by 2005-09-22 10:25:09

SOME 120 inmates at the Guangzhou Prison signed letters of intention to work for 18 companies during a job fair held at the prison Tuesday (Sep 20th).

The job fair, organized by the prison administrators and the Baiyun District's labor bureau, was the first job fair ever held at a Guangdong prison, the Guangzhou Daily reported. Some 148 prisoners attended the job fair.

At the job fair, the jobseekers seemed quite timid. When companies asked them about expected salaries, some did not provide answers.

An inmate surnamed Tang was led to the stall of a bus company by a prison officer. "You have 11 years' experience in bus maintenance, and why don't you have a try?" said the policeman.

Mr. Pu with the bus company accepted Tang's resume and started talking to him. The company offered 800 (US$99) to 3,000 yuan a month.

The employment of ex-convicts has always been a thorny issue for Guangzhou's labor authorities, because most of the city's ex-convicts lack skills and are subject to prejudice from ordinary citizens.

"What worry us most is that the released prisoners cannot find a job and cannot support themselves," said Tan Ruliang, head of the Guangzhou Prison.

The bureau started mobilizing enterprises to attend the job fair from as early as July. Some 18 companies in the clothing, shoemaking, printing and public transport industries attended Tuesday's job fair, providing 310 positions.

A company spokesperson said the company did not want to employ ex-convicts at first. "But after visiting the prison, we found that many inmates were skilled workers and well disciplined. We need some skilled workers, and so we decided to have a try," said the spokesperson.

The company received seven resumes and planned to hire five or six of them.

Preparation for the job fair began as early as 2003, when the labor bureau started career counseling for inmates at several prisons. Some 1,875 inmates had received training, and 957, or 51 percent of them, have found jobs after being released.

Now 70 percent of the inmates in Guangzhou Prison hold professional qualification certificates.

The labor bureau said it planned to hold one job fair for inmates each year. Ex-convicts in Guangzhou are entitled to five free job trainings. They can get subsidies from 80 yuan to 180 yuan a month after they find jobs. Job agencies can obtain a 200-yuan subsidy from the government for finding a job for an ex-convict.

Editor: Wing

By:Helen Deng Source:Szdaily web edition
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