Most people have experienced some kind of discrimination when seeking jobs, according to a survey.
The discrimination involves gender, age, educational background and physical attributes.
The recent survey covered 3,500 people in 10 major cities. Eighty-five per cent of the respondents acknowledge the existence of job discrimination and slightly more than half said there exists "serious discrimination".
Conducted by the Constitutional Government Research Institute of China University of Politics and Law, the survey was to gauge fairness in the booming job market in China.
Cai Dingjian, head of the institute, told the media job discrimination can be found in almost all walks of life in obvious and invisible forms.
"Some so-called must-be requirements for jobs are ridiculous," Cai said.
Female job seekers encounter discrimination over future maternity leave.
"We have to conquer the multi-tier barriers of gender, job skills, working experience, and talent, to be treated equally as men. Otherwise, even top female students could lose out to males of average level performance," said an anonymous 22-year-old from Chongqing Normal University.
Most job advertisements detail gender, age, nationality, ethnic group, marriage status, height, educational background and working experience.
Some overstep the mark by requiring applicants to be "above average looking" or a "good social drinker".
Physically disabled people topped the discrimination list. Sixty-six percent said they had experienced some kind of discrimination.
They were followed by people suffering from the HIV/AIDS virus, hepatitis B, and migrant workers.
Mo Rong, deputy director of the labor science research institute under the Ministry of Labor and Social Security, told China Daily the lack of legal support is to blame.
However, the drafting of the Employment Promotion Law will help alleviate the problem, he said.
(China Daily June 14, 2007)