Time to restore the Labor Day golden week

Source:Global Times Published: 2013-4-27 23:48:01

The Labor Day holiday will begin tomorrow. For this three-day holiday, which is only one day longer than ordinary weekends, Chinese people have worked continuously for seven days. Some people grumble that it would be better to have no holiday than to endure such an arrangement.

There is a common complaint among Chinese people that holidays are too scarce. Some analysts point out that statutory holidays in China number one day more than in the US. People grumble about the amount of holidays all over the world. Chinese people have experienced a time when there was only one day rest a week. Holiday arrangements cannot go beyond national conditions.

A feeling of tiredness is prevalent among the Chinese public, the causes of which are numerous, including overtime work, high pressure and society still running on weekends. An important cause is that the weeklong Labor Day holiday Chinese people once had has been replaced by a short three-day break. Many families still have difficulty in adapting to this change.

To the majority of families, "golden-week holidays" mean that members can enjoy holidays at the same time. Precisely because of this, many people prefer a golden week to three three-day holidays spread throughout the year.

It is not realistic to rapidly increase statutory holidays. However, small adjustments, such as adding one or two days off, or restoring the weeklong Labor Day holiday, can greatly change Chinese people's feelings. Specifically, we suggest canceling one of the three small holidays and transferring those days to the Labor Day holiday. Authorities can add one more statutory holiday. Then the weeklong Labor Day golden week could be restored.

From 1994 to 1999, the number of holidays almost doubled. In 2009, Chinese people got one more statutory holiday. Four years have passed since 2009, so the pattern suggests it is time for us to add one day more.

One more statutory holiday will have a very slight negative impact on China's economy but will strongly promote the development of the tourism industry. Moreover, it will improve Chinese people's sense of happiness and increase their confidence.

China's economic rise is continuous. Achievements in social progress which can be felt by ordinary people should also appear frequently. Almost all of Chinese society can benefit from the restoring of the weeklong Labor Day holiday.

It is meaningless for us to argue whether it was right to change from the Labor Day golden week to small holidays. China's economic and social development has achieved a new height, which calls for the restoration of the weeklong Labor Day holiday.

We hope this call can get serious attention from policymakers. China's reform is continuing to move forward, but the reform of holidays should not be considered as having reached a destination.

Posted in: Observer

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