UPDATE: Good news! Chinese labor activist Chen Weixiang was released by police authorities on January 2nd. He sends his gratitude to all our union and all his friends overseas who supported him and helped resolve his case.
We have learned that Chen Weixiang, an activist and organizer with sanitation workers in China, was arrested by police and detained in an unknown location.
Mr. Chen is a graduate of the Labor School at Penn State University, and our friends there are seriously concerned for his safety. Mr. Chen published news on public social media about sanitation workers’ concerns and their legal rights.
In a situation like this, it’s likely that Mr. Chen will be tortured in prison and could face a lengthy sentence in a prison or labor camp. However, the Chinese authorities may back down if they see that he has a high profile abroad.
We stand for the rights of all workers and ask members and allies to send a letter of support for Mr. Chen to head of police in the city where he was arrested. You can see the letter I wrote here for a guide (also, below).
Matthew Yarnell, President, SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania