Al Jazeera Video on Black Lung Activism in China

Al Jazeera has posted an interesting 25-minute video (available here) about Chinese black lung activist Wang Keqin, an investigative journalist who formed an organization called “Love Save Pneumoconiosis” to help Chinese miners with black lung disease.

The video tells the story of how Wang Keqin used the Chinese social networking site Weibo to form an organization to raise awareness of the epidemic of black lung in China and raise funds for miners suffering from black lung.

Using money raised with the help of Chinese artists and celebrities, Love Save Pneumoconiosis provides $1600 in hospital treatment to hundreds of miners with pneumoconiosis.  Wang Keqin has had success in getting the hospitals to provide care and screening.  The mining companies, however, do not have to compensate the miners.  Wang Keqin estimates that six million Chinese have pneumoconiosis.

It is not clear from the video what percentage of the problem is from coal mines as opposed to other types of mines.  For example, the video talks about miners who worked in privately owned gold mines, so it appears that many of the miners may not have coal workers’ pneumoconiosis or coal mine dust lung disease but rather another form of pneumoconiosis that we would not call “black lung.”

The video was made by Phil Yan and Richard Liang.

For another post about journalists covering the Chinese black lung epidemic, click here.

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