They Are Also Parents: Study on Migrant Workers with Left-behind Children in China

The majority of migrant worker parents cannot cope with the pressure of raising children away from home


Over 80% of migrant workers with left-behind children feel inadequate as parents because they feel unable to support their children’s education and overall emotional development, leading to frequent anxiety and feelings of guilt.  


The research by CCR CSR (‘The Centre for Child Rights and Business’ since 2021) in cooperation with Facilitator and supported by the CSR centre at the Swedish Embassy was performed among 1500 workers and management staff in nine factories in the Pearl River Delta and Chongqing. It found that over 40% of parents have quit their work in the past for family related reasons and for the parents the well -being of their children is their number one priority.


The research also shows that a lack of financial means, insufficient access to education and difficulty in making enough time to raise the children, are among the key reasons for family separation and failed relationships between parents and children.


“I feel lonely and I miss my children. I can’t always be calling them, and we can’t coordinate our time to talk either … if there were jobs back at home then I’d definitely quit and go back home to find work so I could be closer to my children.” (- migrant worker parent)


Companies can play a significant role in supporting working parents and leveraging available resources to assist the wellbeing of families. The research report launch on January 9 in Beijing and January 13 in Shanghai, aims to share the key findings and to create an opportunity for discussion on the issue of migrant worker parents and the opportunities for greater actions.


The full report, together with a two-page summary of findings can be viewed downloaded below. 


Published on 09/04/2014

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