(Minghui.org) The guards in the brainwashing centers and forced labor camps, aside from forcing practitioners to do slave labor, often extort money from their families. They claim that the money is for “living expenses” or “nutrition fees”.
“No matter what the situation, do not cooperate with the evil’s demands, orders, or what it instigates. If everyone does this the environment won’t be this way.” (“Dafa Disciples’ Righteous Thoughts are Powerful” in Essentials for Further Advancement II)
My understanding of this is that we should not give any money to practitioners who are being detained. Practitioners being held do not have freedom to move about, much less the freedom to control their property or money. Even if individual police promise to give the money to the practitioners, they cannot fulfill their promise.
The forced labor camps have regulations that restrict inmates from having money, except for a few “camp dollars”. That means that all of the money given to practitioners will go to the guards and other staff. When camp officials are able to get money from practitioners, it provides them with even less incentive to release those being held. The officials see the practitioners as easy money when they are in their custody.
The property of practitioners and that of their families are Dafa resources, which are to be used for saving sentient beings and helping Teacher rectify the Fa. We cannot and should not give these resources to the evil. The way the evil disregards the law and arrests good people is actually a violation of the law. The police illegally detain people and should be responsible for any expenses, including meals and board.
When money is extorted from the families of practitioners, the family members may develop fear or resentment, and blame the practitioner. This may make it harder for them to see the truth and be saved.
I was refused admittance to the Shandong Province No. 2 Women’s Forced Labor Camp because I did not pass the physical examination. I saw a manager by the name of Wang, of the Political and Security Department of the Laishang District, pull the doctor aside and talk to him about money. Wang told the doctor: “Her family is very rich. If you admit her, you can make as much money as you want.” He told other police officers: “The doctors have become rich over the past few years. The police have to bribe the doctors when they take people to the hospital to be admitted. During the New Year’s festival, gift boxes for the doctors from Yantai City and Weihai City were piled high.”
When I was taken to the gate of the forced labor camp, the discipline department manager, Xiao Aihua, said to the Yantai police officer in a strange tone: “I am not taking her for less than 2,000 Yuan.” The officer said: “Can it be 1,500. I don’t have that much with me.” Xiao said: “Then why don’t you write me an IOU.”
Later, Xiao Aihua came into the restroom where I was cuffed to the wall. I had been in a half squatting position for 24 hours without sleeping. Xiao said: “The police department paid a 2,000 Yuan 'nutrition fee' for you. They want you to write an IOU.” It was really ridiculous. I had been tortured, and there was no such thing as nutrition in that place. I was on a hunger strike, and was being tortured by having tubes inserted in me for days. My upper body and my legs were tied together. They charged me a 70 Yuan “nutrition fee” every time I was force-fed.
Everyone that was taken to the Wangcun Forced Labor Camp in Shandong Province was asked in detail about his or her family’s financial situation. Then the camp would call the practitioners home and ask the family to pay “living expenses” to cover daily necessities. However, the money given by the families never reached the practitioners. Rather, it was kept in the hands of the police. We were told that they would “keep it in our account”, but we never saw our account. The inmates were not allowed to keep any currency, and could only have a tiny bit of “camp money” to buy things from the camp store, or to be used when they asked the police to buy things for them.
My family deposited a lot of money into my “account” every time they visited me during the three years that I was held. Sometimes they gave up to a thousand Yuan. Two out of the three years that I was detained, I was under strict management and spent very little money. Aside from the meal expenses and some sundry stuff, I didn't need to buy anything. Officer Li Qian, who was in charge of accounting, never told me how much money my family had brought me, but she did say that it was quite a bit. Because I couldn't meet with my family, I had no way of knowing how much they had given. When I left the camp, Li said that the money in my account would be donated to the camp. The fact is it probably just went in her pocket. I did not get a penny, not even a receipt.
According to the laws and regulations of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), inmates were not supposed to pay for meals. The government provided the funds to the forced labor camps for meals. Because the camps kept the money for themselves, they in turn asked the families to pay for the meals. The meals in the forced labor camps were rotten. How ironic that food not worth eating became a money-making apparatus for the corrupt police.
Inmates in the camp worked 16 hours a day, from 5:30 a.m. until 11:00 p.m. with no breaks in between. The police did not care if a person fainted or was sick. They would recruit those who had special skills to help with their personal needs.
According to the law, the forced labor camps were supposed to provide time off for home holiday visits every month along with national holidays. No inmate was to stay in the camp for more than ten months out of the year. So normally a person serving a three-year term would be released in 30 months.
However, since the labor camp system has begun to contract workers from outside the camp, it has taken the liberty to increase all terms to 12 months a year.
When my three-year term came to an end, Officer Li Aiwen was concerned that a wound I had was not healed. People would be able to see evidence of the persecution I had suffered if I were released. Because I was young and capable of working, and my family was sending in money to pay for my expenses, officer Li kept me for a few months beyond my term.
That is when I realized that working for the camp was cooperating with the evil.
Later, I learned that my family had money and property extorted from them valued at over ten thousand Yuan. I also know of many other practitioners whose families sent in a great deal of money, only to have their terms extended.
In contrast to my situation, there was another practitioner who understood the way the evil was using money to persecute practitioners. The police tried to force her several times to call home and ask her family to bring in money. She insisted that she was divorced and had no family and no money. Her relatives did not come when the police forced her to ask them to bring in some clothes for her. The police could not get anything from her, so they ordered the other inmates not to provide her with anything. But everyone helped her in secret, letting her use their tissues, toothpaste, underwear, etc.
Because she didn't have any living expenses, every meal was added to the deficit of her account. Then she developed a serious health problem and became immobile. The police took her to the hospital and called her child to pay for the medical expenses. The child had righteous thoughts and refused to pay any money. The police realized that they were not going to get any money, and were in fact, losing money every day by paying for the medical bills and meal expenses. She couldn't work and needed supervision in the hospital. A few days later, they took her out to the street and left her there. She went home after the police departed.
An elderly relative of mine was taken to the detention center and held for over two years. Her weight went from 130 pounds to 60 pounds and she became critically ill. The police kept asking her family for money, but they were very poor and refused to pay anything. Then the police told them that she could be released if they paid this officer so much and that officer so much. The practitioners discussed it with her family and they all decided that they should never do anything to encourage the evil. When the police received nothing, she was released within a few days.
Reflecting back, although I was able to take money and such things lightly at the time, I was restricting myself to individual cultivation. I was not clear about the principles of Fa-rectification period cultivation and saving sentient beings. I took this economic persecution as a persecution against humans. The attachments such as comfort, ease, and relying on family members must be eliminated. We need to fundamentally reject the old forces’ arrangements.
“Cultivation is a solemn thing. I want you to cultivate into gods, and in that process you are able to validate the Fa. That is why I have imparted the Dafa to you, and why I have given you unprecedented, eternal glory. It is not to have you simply become a hero among everyday people in counteracting the persecution. Rather, it is to have you validate the Fa while negating the old forces’ arrangements and opposing the persecution, and to, through this, progress towards godhood.” (“Fa Taught in the International Teleconference” in The Essentials of Diligent Progress VOL. III)
I hope the facts disclosed here are inspiring and helpful to everyone.