Awareness of law aids resolution
The best gift for lawyer Xu Xianghui on Constitution Day, which fell on Dec 4, is that the legal awareness of his villagers has been improving.
He was named legal consultant in Xuri village, Guangdong province, in 2009, and since then has helped villagers settle disputes and taught them how to use the law to protect themselves.
"The first law I taught them was the Constitution, as I wanted them to know their basic rights and obligations granted by the law," he said. "Now, villagers do not fight against each other in conflicts like they did 17 years ago."
He shared his experiences with national top legislator Zhang Dejiang, as well as officials from other authorities, students and legal professionals during a seminar on Monday.
He highlighted the importance of popularizing laws in grassroots governance, adding that legal consultants like him have participated in resolving more than 53,000 disputes since 2014.
Zhang, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, noted the Constitution is the country's fundamental law, saying its popularization is a basic but a long-term project for fulfilling the rule of law.
Three students (a primary student, a middle school student and a college student) were also invited to share their understanding about the Constitution at the seminar. All of them mentioned their better understanding of the key status of the Constitution and related legal structures.
"Previously, judicial experts were often invited to such seminars, but this time, it's unusual but good to see grassroots representatives, including students and lawyers, play a major role," said Ma Huaide, a law professor at China University of Political Science and Law.
"After all, the aim of our popularizing the law is to help people enhance their legal awareness and apply their legal knowledge in their work and life," he added.
Guo Jie, a judge from Fujian province, went to a primary school on Monday to teach students how to use the law to stay safe from sexual assault, drugs and campus dangers.
"Talking face-to-face is necessary, as it makes the laws easier for children to understand," she added.