Family and Destitution

Top Teacher and Wife in Displacement for Faith, Family Harassed and in Dire Financial Straits

Based on an original report from Minghui.org

Mr. Zhou Qing is a well-regarded teacher who consistently receives top teaching evaluations and never hesitates to help others. In the past 22 years, however, Zhou has been repeatedly forced out of job and had to live a vagrant life to avoid being persecuted for his faith in Falun Gong. 

Most recently Zhou and his wife, also a Falun Gong practitioner, have gone into hiding to avoid arrest and the police have harassed the couple’s family members in an attempt to find their whereabouts.

In June of 2021, three officers from Guiyang City, Guizhou Province—where Zhou stayed before going into hiding—went to his hometown in Luodian Town, Jingshan City, Hubei Province to hunt for him. After interrogating Zhou’s 80-year-old mother who refused to reveal her son’s whereabouts, the police went to Xinshi Town to terrorize Zhou’s son and father-in-law.

Zhou’s son was bedridden and recovering from major surgery. The young man and his grandfather, however, were both forced to turn in their cellphones and to fingerprint an interrogation record. Their phones were only returned after hours of being inspected.

After the police left at 10 p.m., Zhou’s father-in-law suffered from insomnia. He fell the next day and ended up in a wheelchair. The Guiyang police, however, continue to harass him and his grandson.

Excellent and Conscientious Teacher

Zhou was a physics teacher at the Jingshan City First High School. He began practicing Falun Gong in 1996 and after his teaching improved significantly. He fastidiously marked the students’ homework, carefully explained the problems, and encouraged his students.

In one class he taught, all 76 students gave him the best evaluation score at the end of the semester. 

Zhou was also known for his conscientiousness.

Zhou once substituted for a teacher that called in sick. When the school informed him that he would be paid for the classes and the sick teacher’s salary would be deducted, he refused to take the money. 

A few days later the school supervisor still paid him the fee, with an additional bonus. He returned the bonus and he did not intend to be rewarded for helping a coworker.

Incarceration and Intensified Persecution from Workplace

In 2000, when the director of the local education bureau visited Zhou’s school and learned that Zhou still practiced Falun Gong, he conspired with the school principal and detained Zhou within the school. 

During that time, the school conducted a survey on the teachers’ performance, and many parents demanded Zhou resume teaching.

With the strong demand of his students and their parents, Zhou was released a month later. 

The principal though continued to harass Zhou and his family. He instigated the security guard to bring in officers from the Xinshi Police Station and arrested Zhou on July 10, 2000. Despite the strong protest of the students and parents, Zhou was locked in a detention center for 16 months and brutally beaten.

During the detention, Zhou’s salary was also suspended. This caused hardship for his family as he was their sole provider. Additionally, when Zhou was released in November 2001, the principal of his school refused to let him go back to work.

A month after Zhou’s release, the principal asked Zhou to teach remedial classes for students who failed the college entrance exam, promising a salary and bonus. After the exam was held in July 2002, Zhou was paid significantly less than the promised amount. 

The principal also restricted the freedom of Zhou and his family on the campus, where they lived in the school-allotted housing on campus. A security guard would obstruct the family from leaving the campus, even to purchase food. Another time, when the principal had Zhou incarcerated, he also sent a security guard immediately to lock Zhou’s home, not even allowing Zhou’s wife and child in to pack their clothes. 

Family Denied Visitation Despite Walking 16 Hours

Zhou was arrested on July 8, 2004 and held at the Xiaogan Detention Center. The guards tortured him until he was paralyzed and unable to speak. Around the same time, the police also arrested his wife and held her in Jingmen City Brainwashing Center.

Although his wife was later released after she became ill, Zhou was sentenced to four years in prison. The authorities then arbitrarily extended his term for eight months and sent him to a brainwashing center after. 

During the four years, Zhou was locked in Fanjiatai Prison in Shayang County, his wife and son had to walk 16 hours of mountain roads to see him. Often, Zhou’s son would his favorite toy, hoping to play with his dad, but every time their requests were denied. 

Sometimes the young boy would not leave and waited outside of the prison for two or three hours, hoping that the guards would change their minds. When the little boy desperately cried out, “Dad, dad…,” the guards would come out and drive the mother and son away.

After returning home from the prison, Zhou’s wife went to the local 610 Office to ask for permission to visit him, but to no avail.

Dejected, she was hit by a big truck on her way back home and she suffered a comminuted fracture and broken hamstrings in her legs. Although she avoided having her legs amputated, she was unable to work anymore. With Zhou’s salary being suspended, the injuries caused his wife and son even more distress in their lives.

Couple Displaced and Son Needing Surgery, Family Struggling Financially

When Zhou was released, the family decided to move to Guiyang City in nearby Guizhou Province to avoid persecution. In Guiyang City, he provided private tutoring to students to make a living. Because of his outstanding teaching ability and upright personality, he was given many teaching opportunities.

Zhou was then able to purchase a house, but when the police found out his whereabouts in 2013, the tutoring center he co-owned was forced to shut down. He then began to work at a private school. 

On a summer morning in 2019, Zhou went to a local police station to do house registration paperwork for his child, he was detained at the police station for hours. Zhou attempted to call a relative in the U.S. to seek help, but police confiscated his cellphone and forced him to reveal the password. 

The police then threatened to shut down the private school Zhou taught at if the principal continued to employ him, forcing Zhou to quit his job. Later, when Zhou changed his residence in Biayun District, officials again harass him and coerced his landlord to kick him out. 

Police from the Baiyun District also dispatched a police car to follow Zhou around and subpoenaed him every other day. This was to prevent him from giving classes and to destroy him financially. 

The residential committee of Baiyun District ordered his family to move again. At the time his son’s bone tuberculosis was so severe that the boy had difficulty breathing and walking. Due to being constantly on the move to avoid persecution, the child was unable to receive proper treatments. 

After the family moved out of Guiyang City, the child went back to Hubei Province to live with his maternal grandfather. Soon the child became paralyzed and had a major operation on his spine. He nearly died during the surgery.

Zhou and his wife did not live with their son because they did not want him to be implicated by the persecution. After they were forced into displacement, the police from Guiyang traveled to Hubei Province and harassed the boy about his parents’ whereabouts. Despite the boy not knowing, the police have continued to call him and gave him enormous pressure. 

In addition, with the boy’s surgery having cost over 200,000 yuan and still having another surgery to do, the family is in dire financial straits.

Original Article: https://en.minghui.org/html/articles/2021/8/27/194808.html

Alice Kuang

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