fredag 17. februar 2023

Elderly in China protest over slashed health benefits

Crowds of retirees in China have again taken to the streets to protest against cuts to their medical benefits. They gathered on Wednesday for a second time in Wuhan, where Covid was first detected, and also in the north-eastern city of Dalian. The second round of protests in seven days puts pressure on President Xi Jinping's administration just weeks before the annual National People's Congress, which will usher in a new leadership team.

Protests first took place in Wuhan on 8 February after provincial authorities said they were cutting the level of medical expenses which retirees can claim back from the government. Social media footage shows the protesters to be largely elderly retirees, who say this comes at a time of soaring healthcare costs. Although such health insurance matters are handled at a provincial level, protests have spread to different parts of the country in what appears to be a renewed belief in the power of demonstrating in China.