Boston Marathon bombings

Chinese Boston bombing victim's family to get US$2.2m

Social media comments sarcastically compare payouts to paltry aid given on the mainland

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 10 July, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 10 July, 2013, 5:40am

The family of a Chinese graduate student killed in the Boston Marathon bombing will reportedly receive US$2.2 million compensation, prompting a social media outcry over the lack of comparable assistance for disaster victims on the mainland.

The compensation fund established after the April 15 attack will distribute US$64.3 million to victims and their families, including Boston University student Lu Lingzi , 23, of Shenyang , mainland media reported yesterday.

The twin blasts wounded about 260 people, including Lu's friend, another Chinese student surnamed Zhou. The One Fund Boston was established by Massachusetts and Boston officials as a way to channel public donations for victims.

The families of those killed and victims who lost two limbs can expect to receive the most, about US$2.19 million, according to Caijing Magazine. Those who lost one limb will get US$1.2 million.

Compensation for other victims will range from US$8,000 for the least serious injuries to US$948,000 for those who required long hospital stays.

The size of the compensation payments drew a flood of sarcastic comments from internet users on the mainland, where compensation is usually far less.

"I finally know why so many people like to run to America: because it is better to die there," one commenter wrote. Another said: "The American capitalists are making the Chinese lose face."

By comparison, the families of children in a knife attack in Henan elementary school in December received about 300,000 yuan (HK$380,000).

Five years after the massive earthquake in Wenchuan , Sichuan , the parents of children who died when shoddily built schools collapsed are still seeking compensation.

The injured Chinese student in the Boston bombing, whose details were not disclosed, will likely receive between US$125,000 and US$948,000, depending on the length of her hospital stay.

One Fund administrator Kenneth Feinberg has noted that the entire fund came from private donations, unlike the government-mandated US$7.1 billion fund for victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks.