Zhang Jianli used to hire only male workers on his construction sites throughout Chifeng, Inner Mongolia, specifying in online job ads, “Women workers please don’t contact us.” Now with abundant work but not enough hands, Mr. Zhang says he has relented.
He now offers daily wages of about 160 yuan, roughly $25, for women workers to move wood and bricks, about one-fifth less than their male peers, and up to 200 yuan a day for urgent jobs. His ads say that both men and women can apply.
“They work hard and have few complaints,” Mr. Zhang said of the women he hires, most in their 40s and 50s.
Chinese women are increasingly taking on heavy-labor jobs long dominated by men in construction, transportation and other sectors, bucking traditional gender roles in China’s vast workforce.
A labor shortage caused by low birthrates and an aging population is pushing employers to recruit more women to build high-rises, maintain rail tracks and drive trucks, among other roles.
Originally Appeared Here