chapter
12 Pages

Introduction

BBC News heard that 19 Chinese cockle-pickers had died on the sands of Morecambe Bay in northwest England. They had been caught by the dangerous tides. The workers had been recruited illegally and risked their lives to collect the cockles for £7.00 an hour. Father of two children, Guo Binglong, used his mobile phone to reach his family in China: ‘The water is up to my chest. The bosses got the time wrong. I can’t get back in time.’ Could they pray for him? He was from Fujian province, the source for so many Chinese wandering around the world in search of work (Pieke et al. 2004). Mr Guo had paid a large fee to a ‘snakehead’ (an illegal labour recruiter) to find him work and had already managed to send £2000 to his family in Fujian province.