Outdoor workers' service stations rise to 1,000

The stations can be found in all 16 districts in Shanghai and provide a place for street cleaners, package and food delivery workers and truck drivers to have a rest during work.

More than 400 more service stations for outdoor workers started operation on Monday, boosting the number of such stations in Shanghai to over 1,000, the Shanghai Trade Union announced.

The service stations are located in banks, telecommunications stores, supermarkets, pharmacies, post offices, restaurants, hotels and service stations of subdistrict governments and district trade unions.

They intend to serve mainly street cleaners, package and food delivery workers, truck drivers, traffic police officers and assistants.

The required facilities of the stations include air-conditioning, a water dispenser, a refrigerator, a microwave oven, charging sockets and chairs.

Shanghai Trade Union

One of the outdoor workers' service stations at a China Telecom store.

Together with the first 600 that were unveiled in February this year, the stations now cover all of Shanghai's 16 districts.

Opening hours are in accordance with those of businesses in which the stations are located, usually from 9am to 5pm.

The service station at the China Mobile store on downtown Nanjing Road W., which is a rest room originally intended only for the store's staff, opened its doors at the end of last year and runs from 9am to 9pm.

Now about 20 workers come in from the street to have a rest during the day, most of them being street cleaners, delivery workers and traffic assistants, said Zhang Kaiqin, the store manager who is also in charge of the station.

“In summer they usually drop in at noontime to sit down for a rest and drink some water,” she said.

Zhang said her company plans to further equip the room with a coffee machine, an air purifier and some fitness equipment.

A street cleaner surnamed Lu, who works on a part of Nanjing Road W. near the service station, said the station provides shade for street workers like her on hot summer days.

“Previously we often took a rest during work in a nearby neighborhood where the guards let us sit on some low benches,” she told Shanghai Daily.

Unfortunately, Lu can’t use the microwave oven at the service station to warm her breakfast because she starts working from 5am and the station doesn't open till 9am. For lunch she has a free meal at her company office which is about 200 meters from where she works.

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