A gender discrimination case has been allowed to proceed to trial in Hangzhou’s Xihu district. The case has been filed by Huang Rong (not her real name), after her application for a staff writer position was rejected several times on the grounds that the position was restricted to male applicants. Given that this discriminatory practice is common across the country, the case has received widespread support online, with netizens using Weibo to gather the signatures of 133 females from more than 11 cities in issuing open letters to the People’s Supreme Court, the All-China Women Federation and other government institutions both expressing their support and calling for a transparent and fair handling of the trial process.
Huang’s case is the first gender discrimination case of its kind in Zhejiang, and when interviewed about the case, Xu Ying, a lawyer from Jiangsu’s Hengding Law Firm, expressed that Huang’s case has a valid legal basis since the practice was in violation of the amended Law of the PRC on the Protection of Rights and Interests of Women and the Employment Promotion Law, which bar employers from rejecting or raising the hiring standards for female applicants on gender grounds. Unless the requirement is inherent to the advertised position, any restrictions on applicants on the basis of gender, race, religion or <em>hukou</em> status would be considered discriminatory.