Babies for Sale: The Scandal of China’s Single Child Policy

Babies for sale: The scandal of China’s brutal single child policy Lying on a spartan bed, feeding her tiny daughter from a bottle, teenager Wai Ling describes her heartbreaking dilemma. Under China’s strict birth-control laws, Wai Ling, 19, and her boyfriend, 21, are too young to get married – and without being married they can’t register their daughter’s birth. They could bribe a state official to turn a blind eye, but that would cost far more than they could ever afford – half a year’s salary of £1,300. Sickening trade: A boy like this is worth £1,200 to China’s child snatchers The alternative of a court appearance and swingeing fine for having an illegal child would be equally ruinous – so Wai Ling feels she has little choice but to sell her newborn baby to a child trafficker. Even the thought of handing over her baby causes her unbearable pain. “Every mother assumes she will be with her child for ever,” she cries plaintively. “But soon she will be growing up in another family. As a mother, I really want to watch her grow every day with me. But I know that’s not possible.” Twelve years ago, Kate Blewitt and Brian Wood’s award-winning documentary The Dying Rooms caused international outrage with its shocking footage of malnourished Chinese babies being left to die of starvation in state-run orphanages. Now the film-makers have returned to China to find out what effect the country’s capitalist explosion is having on Beijing’s brutal and unbending Single Child Policy. Wai Ling’s harrowing story is revealed in their special Dispatches programme, China’s Stolen Babies, which reveals...