A migrant worker known for literally opening up his chest to prove he had occupational lung disease finally received the compensation he had been demanding.
Zhang Haichao said yesterday he was very lucky to finally be compensated thanks to media exposure.
The 28-year-old on Tuesday received 615,000 yuan ($90,000) from Xinmi-based Zhengzhou Zhendong Fireproof Material Factory in Henan province where he used to work and where he developed the occupational lung disease pneumoconiosis.
"I feel very lucky that so many in the media, citizens and authorities were concerned about me, which helped me successfully get the compensation," he told China Daily yesterday, obviously in a light mood though still coughing from time to time.
He hoped authorities continue to safeguard rights for vulnerable migrant workers who have not attracted the public's attention.
"My biggest wish now is for the government to continue safeguarding rights for more migrant workers in all corners of the country, because not everyone in need is as lucky as me to be reported by the media," he said.
Zhang's four former colleagues - Wang Youcai, Shang Wenge, Gao Shuiwu and Ma Jianshan, who developed the same disease in the factory - also received compensation ranging from 317,000 to 210,000 yuan.
Zhang had worked in the factory operating a crusher and a press machine since 2004. With growing pain in his chest and an ongoing cough since 2007, Zhang suspected he had developed occupational lung disease. The diagnosis by several major hospitals in Henan and Beijing later confirmed he had developed pneumoconiosis.