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China forbids COVID-19-related employment discrimination

Updated: Aug 2, 2022 Xinhua Print
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Students wait to take a job interview at an autumn campus job fair in Beijing Institute of Technology in Beijing, capital of China, Oct 18, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]

Authorities on Aug 1 issued a circular targeting workplace discrimination against employees or job seekers due to their previous history of COVID-19 infection.

Employers and human resources service agencies are strictly forbidden from refusing to recruit people who have recovered from COVID-19 on the grounds that they once tested positive for the virus, according to the circular jointly released by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security and the National Health Commission.

Discrimination against people who have recovered from COVID-19 when they are in the process of work orientation or in the workplace should be prohibited.

Employers are also strictly forbidden from illegally laying off those who have recovered from COVID-19, according to the circular.

To protect the equal employment rights of people who have recovered from COVID-19, the circular said that no organization or individual shall unlawfully inquire about nucleic acid test results, except to meet the needs of COVID-19 prevention and control work.

The circular also banned employers from releasing recruitment information that discriminates against people who formerly tested positive for COVID-19.

It urged efforts to strengthen relevant guidance and supervision, calling for the imposition of punishments for violations, in accordance with laws and regulations.

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