Law of China on the Protection of Women's Rights and Interests

 2018-08-07  5


· Area of Law: Civil Law

· Level of Authority: Laws

· Date issued:08-28-2005

· Effective Date:10-01-1992

· Issuing Authority: Standing Committee of the National People's Congress

· Status: Effective

 

Law of China on the Protection of Women's Rights and Interests
(Adopted at the 5th Session of the Seventh National People's Congress on April 3, 1999 and amended according to the Decision of the 17th Session of the Standing Committee of the Tenth National People's Congress about Amending the Law of the People's Republic of China on the Protection of Women's Rights and Interests on August 28, 2005)

Contents
Chapter I General Provisions 
Chapter II Political Rights 
Chapter III Rights and Interests Relating to Culture and Education 
Chapter IV Rights and Interests of Labor and Social Security 
Chapter V Rights and Interests Relating to Property 
Chapter VI Right of Person 
Chapter VII Rights and Interests Relating to Marriage and Family 
Chapter VIII Legal Liability 
Chapter IX Supplementary Provisions 
Chapter I General Provisions
Article 1 In accordance with the Constitution and the actual conditions of the country,this Law is formulated to protect women's lawful rights and interests, promote the equality between men and women and allow full play to women's role in socialist modernization.
Article 2 Women shall enjoy equal rights with men in all aspects of political, economic, cultural, social and family life.
It is a basic state policy to realize equality between men and women. The state shall take necessary measures to gradually improve various systems for the protection of the rights and interests of women and to eliminate all kinds of discrimination against women.
The state shall protect the special rights and interests enjoyed by the women under the law.
It is prohibited to discriminate against, ill-treat, abandon or cruelly kill the women.
Article 3 The State Council shall work out a program for the development of Chinese women and shall incorporate it into the plan on the national economy and social development.
Each local people's government at the county level shall, according to the program for the development of Chinese women, work out a plan on the development of women within its own administrative area and shall incorporate it into the plan on development of the national economy and social development.
Article 4 The protection of women's lawful rights and interests is a common responsibility of the whole society. State organs, public organizations, enterprises and institutions as well as urban and rural mass organizations of self-government at the grass-roots level shall, in accordance with the provisions of this Law and other relevant laws, protect women's rights and interests.
The state shall take effective measures to provide necessary conditions for women to exercise their rights according to law.
Article 5 The state shall encourage women to cultivate a sense of self-respect, self-confidence, self-reliance and self-strengthening, and to safeguard their own lawful rights and interests by utilizing law.
Women shall abide by the laws of the state, respect social morality and perform their obligations prescribed by law.
Article 6 The people's governments at all levels shall attach importance to and strengthen the protection of rights and interests of women.
The people's governments at and above the county level shall be the institutions responsible for the work of women and children. They shall organize, coordinate, guide and urge the relevant departments to conduct well the protection of the rights and interests of women."
The relevant departments of the people's governments at the county level or above shall do well the work of protection of the rights and interests of women within their respective scope of functions
Article 7 The All-China Women's Federation and women's federations at various levels shall, in accordance with the laws and charter of the All-China Women's Federation, represent and uphold the rights of women of all nationalities and all walks of life, and strive for the protection of women's rights and interests.
The labor unions and the communist youth leagues shall, according to their respective working scope, strive for the protection of the rights and interests of women.
Article 8 People's governments at various levels and relevant departments shall commend and award the organizations and individuals that have made notable achievements in the protection of women's lawful rights and interests.
Chapter II Political Rights
Article 9 The state shall guarantee that women enjoy equal political rights with men.
Article 10 Women have the right to conduct state affairs, manage economic and cultural undertakings and administer social affairs through various channels and in various ways.
When any law, rule, regulation or public policy relating to the important rights and interests of women is formulated, the opinions of the women's federations shall be taken into account.
The women and women's organizations shall be entitled to put forward opinions and proposals on the protection of rights and interests of women to the state organs at all levels.
Article 11 Women shall enjoy the equal right, with men, to vote and to stand for election.
Among deputies to the National People's Congress and local people's congresses at various levels, there shall be an appropriate number of women deputies and the state shall take measures to gradually raise the proportion thereof.
Among the members of the residents' committees and villagers' committees, there shall be an appropriate number of women members.
Article 12 The state shall actively train and select female cadres.
State organs, public organizations, enterprises and public institutions must, in training, selecting and appointing cadres, adhere to the principle of equality between men and women, and shall ensure an appropriate number of female cadres for the leading posts.
The state shall pay attention to the training and selection of female cadres of minority nationalities.
Article 13 The All-China Women Federation and the women's federations shall, on behalf of the women, actively participate in the democratic decision-making, management and supervision of the state and social affairs.
Women's federations at various levels and their member organizations may recommend female cadres to state organs, public organizations, enterprises or institutions.
Article 14 The departments concerned shall listen to and accept criticisms or rational suggestions regarding the protection of women's rights and interests; with respect to complaints or charges against, or exposure of infringement upon women's rights and interests, the departments concerned must ascertain the facts, and be responsible for the disposition thereof; no organization or individual may suppress such complaints, charges or exposures or resort to retaliation.
Chapter III Rights and Interests Relating to Culture and Education
Article 15 The state shall guarantee that women enjoy equal rights with men with respect to culture and education.
Article 16 Schools and departments concerned shall, by implementing the relevant regulations of the state, guarantee that women enjoy equal rights with men in such aspects as starting school, entering a higher school, job assignment upon graduation, conferment of academic degrees and dispatch for study abroad.
When a school recruits students, it shall not, except for some particular specialties, refuse to recruit the female students or raise the standards on the recruitment of female students for the reason of gender.
Article 17 Schools shall, in line with the characteristics of female adolescents, take measures in respect of education, management and facilities so as to ensure their sound development in body and in mind.
Article 18 Parents or other guardians must perform their duty of ensuring that female school-age children or adolescents receive the compulsory education.
Where parents or other guardians fail to send female school-age children or adolescents to school, the local people's governments shall admonish and criticize them and, by adopting effective measures, order them to send their female school-age children or adolescents to school, with the exception of those who, on account of illness or other special circumstances, are allowed by the local people's governments not to go to school.
The government, society and schools shall take effective measures to solve the actual difficulties for the female children of the right age of schooling to receive education and shall create chances to ensure the female children of the right age of schooling among the poor, disabled and migrant population to finish the compulsory education.
Article 19 People's governments at various levels shall, in accordance with relevant provisions, incorporate the work of elimination of illiteracy or semi-literacy among women into plans for illiteracy elimination and post-elimination education, adopt organizational forms and working methods suitable to women's characteristics, and organize and supervise the relevant departments in the implementation of such plans.
Article 20 The people's governments at all levels and the relevant departments shall, in the light of the actual needs of the towns and rural women, organize women to receive professional education and practical technical training.
Article 21 State organs, public organizations, enterprises and institutions shall, by implementing relevant regulations of the state, ensure that women enjoy equal rights with men in their participation in scientific, technological, literary, artistic and other cultural activities.
Chapter IV Rights and Interests of Labor and Social Security
Article 22 The state shall guarantee that women enjoy the same labor and social security rights as men do.
Article 23 With the exception of the special types of work or post unsuitable to women, no unit may, in employing staff and workers, refuse to employ women by reason of sex or raise the employment standards for women.
When an entity employs a woman, it shall sign a labor (employment) contract or service agreement with her. The labor (employment) contract or service agreement shall not contain restrictions on her matrimony and child-bearing.
Recruitment of female workers under the age of sixteen shall be prohibited.
Article 24 Equal pay for equal work shall be applied to men and women alike. Women shall be equal with men in the enjoyment of welfare benefits.
Article 25 In such aspects as promotion in post or in rank, evaluation and determination of professional and technological titles, the principle of equality between men and women shall be upheld and discrimination against women shall not be allowed.
Article 26 All units shall, in line with women's characteristics and according to law, protect women's safety and health during their work or physical labor, and shall not assign them any work or physical labor not suitable to women.
Women shall be under special protection during menstrual period, pregnancy, obstetrical period and nursing period.
Article 27 No entity may, for the reason of matrimony, pregnancy, maternity leave or breast-feeding, decrease a female employee's wage, dismiss her or unilaterally terminate the labor (employment) contract or service agreement, with the exception that the female employee requests to terminate the labor (employment) contract or service agreement.
No entity may discriminate against women for the reason of gender when implementing the retirement system of the state.
Article 28 The state shall develop social insurance, social relief, social welfare and health care causes so as to ensure women enjoy the rights and interests in the aspects of social insurance, social relief, social welfare and health care.
The state promotes and encourages the public welfare activities aiming to help women.
Article 29 The state carries out the child-bearing insurance system and shall establish other sound guarantee systems relating to child-bearing.
The local people's governments at all levels and the relevant departments shall provide the poor women with necessary child-bearding aids in pursuance of the pertinent provisions.
Chapter V Rights and Interests Relating to Property
Article 30 The state shall guarantee that women enjoy the equal right, with men, to property.
Article 31 In joint property relationship derived from marriage or family, the rights and interests enjoyed by women according to law may not be infringed upon.
Article 32 Women shall enjoy equal rights with men in the contracted management of rural land, distribution of proceeds of collective economic organizations, use of land requisition and occupation compensations and use of house sites.
Article 33 No organization or individual may trespass a woman's rights and interests in the rural collective economic organization on the ground that she hasn't got married, is married, is divorced or has lost her spouse.
If the husband settles in the domicile of the wife because of marriage, the husband and the children of the couple shall enjoy the same rights and interests as the members of the local rural collective economic organization do.
Article 34 Women's equal right, with men, of succession to property shall be protected by law. Among the statutory successors in the same order, women shall not be discriminated against. Widowed women have the right to dispose of the property inherited by them, and no one may interfere with the disposition thereof.
Article 35 Widowed women who have made the predominant contributions in supporting their parents-in-law shall be regarded as the statutory successors first in order, and their rights of succession thereto shall not be affected by inheritance in subrogation.
Chapter VI Right of Person
Article 36 The state shall guarantee that women enjoy the same right of person as men do.
Article 37 Women's personal freedom shall be inviolable. Unlawful detention or deprivation or restriction of women's freedom of the person by other illegal means shall be prohibited; and unlawful body search of women shall be prohibited.
Article 38 Women's right of life and health shall be inviolable. Drowning, abandoning or cruel infanticide in any manner of female babies shall be prohibited; discrimination against or maltreatment of women who gave birth to female babies or who are barren shall be prohibited; cruel treatment causing injury even death of women by superstition or violence shall be prohibited; maltreatment or abandonment of sick, disabled and aged women shall be prohibited.
Article 39 Abduction of and trafficking in, or kidnapping of women shall be prohibited; buying of women who are abducted and trafficked in, or kidnapped shall be prohibited; and baffling the rescue of women who are abducted and trafficked in, or kidnapped shall be prohibited.
The people's governments at all levels and the relevant departments shall timely take measures to rescue women who are abducted and trafficked in, or kidnapped, and shall properly deal with the problems arising thereafter. The women's federations shall make cooperative efforts to complete the relevant work. Nobody may discriminate against any woman who is abducted and trafficked in, or kidnapped.
Article 40 Sexual harassment against women is banned. The victims shall be entitled to complain to the entity or the relevant organs.
Article 41 Prostitution and whoring shall be prohibited.
It is prohibited to organize, force, induce, shelter or introduce a woman to engage in prostitution or to act indecently against women.
It is prohibited to organize, force or induce women to engage in obscene performances.
Article 42 Women's personal rights, such as right of reputation, right of honor, right of privacy, and right to portrait shall be protected by law.
It is prohibited to injure women's reputation or personal dignity by insult, slander, etc. It is prohibited to debase or injure women's personal dignity by public media or otherwise. Without a woman's own permission, it is prohibited to use her portrait in advertisements, trademarks, window display, newspapers, periodicals, books, audio-visual products, electronic publications, internet, etc.
Chapter VII Rights and Interests Relating to Marriage and Family
Article 43 The state shall guarantee that women enjoy equal rights with men in marriage and family.
Article 44 The state shall protect women's right of self-determination in marriage. Interference with women's freedom of marriage or divorce shall be prohibited.
Article 45 During the period of pregnancy, within one year after childbearing or within 6 months after termination of pregnancy of a woman, her husband shall not apply for divorce. If the woman applies for divorce or if the people's court deems necessary to accept the divorce application of the husband, the case shall not be subject to this restriction.
Article 46 It is prohibited to commit family violence against women.
The state shall take measures to prevent and stop family violence.
The public security, civil affairs, judicial administrative departments, the urban and rural grassroots self-governing organizations, and social organization shall, according to their respective functions, prevent and stop family violence and help the women victims.
Article 47 A woman shall enjoy equal rights with her spouse in possessing, utilizing, profiting from and disposing of the property jointly possessed by the husband and wife according to law, which shall not be affected by the status of income of either party.
If both husband and wife stipulate in writing that they separately own the property they respectively obtain during the existence of their marriage and if the wife has made considerably more efforts to support children, take care of the old or assist the husband in work, etc, the wife shall be entitled to demand compensations from the other party at the time of divorce.
Article 48 At the time of divorce, the husband and the wife shall seek agreement regarding the disposition of their jointly possessed houses; if they fail to reach an agreement, the people's court shall make a judgment in light of the actual circumstances of both parties and according to the principle of showing consideration for their child (children) and for the rights and interests of the wife, except that it is otherwise agreed upon by the two parties.
In a case where the husband and wife jointly rent a house or a room, the wife's housing shall, at the time of divorce, be solved according to the principle of showing consideration for their child (children) and for the rights and interests of the wife.
Article 49 Both parents shall enjoy the equal right to guardianship of their minor child (children).
In a case where the father is deceased, incapacitated or under any other circumstances that make him unable to act as the guardian of a minor child (children), nobody may interfere with the mother's right of guardianship.
Article 50 At the time of divorce, if the wife becomes sterile because of the sterilization operation or any other reasons, the problem to bring up the child (children) shall be so handled that, while to the advantage of the rights and interests of the child (children), due consideration shall be given to the wife's reasonable demands.
Article 51 Women have the right to child-bearing in accordance with relevant regulations of the state as well as the freedom not to bear any child.
Where a couple of child-bearing age practise family planning
according to the relevant regulations of the state,the departments concerned shall provide safe and effective contraceptives and techniques, and ensure the health and safety of the woman receiving any birth-control operation.
The state carries out the pre-marriage, pregnancy and confinement health care system and shall develop the cause of health care of infants and mothers. The people's governments at all levels shall take measures to guarantee that the women enjoy the family planning technologies and services so as to enhance the women's procreative health level.
Chapter VIII Legal Liabilities
Article 52 When a woman's lawful rights and interests are infringed upon, she has the right to require the competent department for settlement, or file an application with the arbitration institution for arbitration or bring a lawsuit in a people's court.
With regard to a woman who needs legal aid or judicial aid because of actual financial difficulties, the local legal aid institution or the people's court shall help her and shall provide her with legal aid or judicial aid under the law.
Article 53 When a woman's lawful rights and interests are infringed upon, she may file a complaint with a women's organization, which shall require the relevant department or entity to investigate and deal with the case. The relevant department or entity shall do so in accordance with the law and give the woman a reply.
Article 54 A women's organization shall support the women victims who need help in litigation.
With regard to an act infringing upon the interests of a particular group of women, the women's federations or the relevant women's organizations may expose and criticize it through the public media and may be entitled to require the relevant department to investigate and punish it.
Article 55 Where a woman's rights and interests in the rural collective economic organization is damaged under the excuse that she hasn't got married, is married, is divorced or has lost her spouse, or in the event that the husband settles at the domicile of his wife, the equality of the husband and the child (children) in enjoying the same rights and interests as those enjoyed by the members of the local rural collective economic organization is infringed upon, the town (township) people's government shall mediate the case in accordance with the law. The victim may also file an application with the rural land contracting arbitration institution for arbitration or lodge a lawsuit in the people's court, the people's court shall accept the case in accordance with the law.
Article 56 Where a violation of this law damages the lawful rights and interests of a woman, if any other law or regulation provides any administrative punishment against it, this law or regulation shall be followed. If such violation causes any property losses or any other damages, the violator shall bear civil liabilities. If any crime is constituted, he shall be subject to criminal liabilities.
Article 57 Where anyone evades, delays or suppresses the investigation and disposition of a complaint, charge or tip-off regarding an infringement upon the rights and interests of a woman, or avenges the person who initiates the complaint or charge or offers the tip-off, the entity he works for, the administrative department or the superior organ shall order him to make corrections and shall give an administrative sanction to the directly liable person-in-charge and other directly liable persons.
If a state organ or any of its staff members fails to perform its (his) duties, fails to stop an infringements upon the rights and interests of a woman or fails to give necessary help to a woman victim and thus causes any serious consequences, the entity of the aforesaid staff member or the superior organ shall give an administrative sanction to the directly liable person-in-charge and other directly liable persons.
Anyone who infringes upon the rights and interests of a woman in the aspects of education, labor and social security, person, property, marriage and family by violating this Law shall be ordered to make corrections by the entity he works for, or by the administrative department or by the superior organ. If the directly liable person-in-charge and other directly liable persons are functionaries of the state, they shall be given an administrative sanction by the entity they work for or by the superior organ.
Article 58 If anyone commits sexual harassment or family violence against a woman to violate this Law, and if his act constitutes a violation of the public security administration, the victim may require the public security organ to give the violator an administrative punishment or may initiate a civil action in the people's court.
Article 59 Where anyone debases or injures the personal dignity of a woman through public media or by any other way to violate this Law, the department of culture, the department of radio, film and television, the department of press and publication or other relevant departments shall, according to their respective functions, order him (it) to make corrections and shall give it (him) an administrative punishment.
Chapter IX Supplementary Provisions
Article 60 The standing committee of the people's congress of each province, autonomous region or municipality may formulate measures for the implementation of this Law.
The people's congress of an autonomous area of ethnic minorities may, in accordance with the principle as provided for by this Law and by taking into consideration the actual circumstances of women of the local ethnic minorities, formulate flexible or supplementary provisions. The provisions of an autonomous region shall not come into force until they have been approved by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress. The provisions of autonomous prefecture or autonomous county shall not come into force until they have been approved by the standing committee of the people's congress of the province, autonomous region or municipality directly under the Central Government, and been reported to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress for archival purposes.
Article 61 This Law shall come into force as of October 1, 1992.