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Hangzhou Now Offers Women-Only Parking Spaces…Extra Wide

One Hangzhou parking lot recently introduced women-only parking spaces that are 1.5 times bigger than regular parking spaces. Although some netizens appreciate the extra space for female drivers, there are also many who deem them sexist.

Manya Koetse

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One Hangzhou parking lot recently introduced women-only parking spaces that are 1.5 times bigger than regular parking spaces. Although some Chinese netizens appreciate the extra space for female drivers, there are also many who deem them sexist.

A parking lot in Tonglu County, Hangzhou, recently introduced eight parking spaces especially meant for female drivers. The parking spaces, 1.5 times bigger than regular parking spots, are marked with pink lines and a female symbol.

womens2

The women-only parking spaces, located at a service area near the Hangxinjing highway, are part of a parking lot with 370 spaces, that also include handicap parking spaces. Pan Tieyong (潘铁勇), the manager of the area, told Qianjiang Evening News that the spaces were meant especially for female drivers experiencing difficulties to park in reverse.

Qianjing Evening News writes that there are many who appreciate the extra space, but that there are also people who think the female-only dedicated space is sexist.

On Sina Weibo, the female-only parking spots have become a point of discussion. Many netizens applaud the idea of wider parking spaces, but think they should be for unskilled drivers in general – male or female.

“This is a good idea for bad female drivers,” one Weibo user comments: “But what about the bad male drivers? Can they park there, too?” Another user writes: “These kinds of parking spaces should be available to any new driver who is insecure about parking in reverse.”

20150513095215238_MediumFemale-only parking in Shanghai (Time Out)

“This has to do with being a good driver or not; it has nothing to do with being male or female,” one netizen comments. “Where are the feminists!?” one other netizen cries out.

This is not the first time female-only parking spaces are introduced in China. A Shanghai mall also has female-only parking since May of last year. The introduction of designated parking areas for women in the city of Dalian in 2015 also sparked some controversy.

enhanced-11870-1406053953-11Women-only parking space near a Chinese mall (Buzzfeed).

China is not the only country implementing female-only parking spaces. Many parking lots in Germany also have designated women’s parking spaces, also causing debate over this phenomenon being sensible or sexist. According to German newspaper Bild, the designated spaces are actually discrimination against men, not women.

According to Washington Post, the German female-only parking spots were originally introduced to protect women from potentially being assaulted in dark parking lots. Many cities therefore established safer parking spaces for women, that were well lit and located closer to the road or buildings.

In this way, the original intention of female-only parking spaces in Germany differs from those in China, where the extra large parking spots reinforce stereotypes of women being worse drivers than men.

“Well, I think it’s a good thing,” one female netizen says about the parking spaces: “I am a bad driver, and I am happy to have this extra space. If you think it is sexist, just don’t park there.”

Manager Pan Tieyong says that the female-only parking spaces are currently very popular. As he tells Qianjiang Evening News: “If all goes well during this trial period, we will consider introducing more parking spaces especially for handicapped people and for female drivers.”

– By Manya Koetse

©2016 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

Manya Koetse is the editor-in-chief of www.whatsonweibo.com. She is a writer and consultant (Sinologist, MPhil) on social trends in China, with a focus on social media and digital developments, popular culture, and gender issues. Contact at manya@whatsonweibo.com, or follow on Twitter.

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    Diandian GUO

    May 28, 2016 at 2:33 pm

    They could have just titled it Parking Spot Extra or Parking Spot XL, for all those who are lousy with parking. It is a common perception that female drivers tend to get nervous when parking. Perhaps this has something to do with sense of space and distance. But it does not mean that men are always confident. Imagine a greener male driver who really wanted to park his car in the female-spot for the extra space, but could not due to the exclusive sign… Women are not all lousy drivers; similarly, men should not be assumed to be perfect drivers either…

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China Local News

Boy, 15, Fatally Beaten and Buried by Group of Minors in Shaanxi

The heinous crime has sparked discussions on the problem of campus violence and China’s criminal liability age.

Manya Koetse

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A brutal incident that took place in the city of Xingping in Shaanxi province is top trending on Chinese social media today.

On October 29, a 15-year-old boy by the name of Yuan (袁) was fatally beaten and buried by a group of six people, all minors.

Beijing News reports that Yuan was a second-year student at the Xianyang Xingping Jincheng Middle School. He had taken time off from school and had a temporary job in Xi’an before the incident occurred.

Yuan’s father told reporters that his son had returned to Xingping on October 29. A small group of minors, including four students, allegedly demanded money from Yuan, which he refused. It is also reported that a conflict occurred because Yuan added one of the minors to his phone’s ‘blacklist’ (电话拉黑).

According to various news reports, the group of minors attacked the boy with a pickaxe after which he became unconscious. They then brought him over to a nearby hotel and discovered he was dead the next day. They later buried his lifeless body in a pit near the school premises.

The location where Yuan’s body was buried, photo by Beijing News.

On November 2, other students who had heard of the crime reported it to the police. Yuan’s body was found in the pit shortly after officers arrived at the scene.

Local authorities released a statement about the case on November 10, in which they stated the suspects have been detained and that the case is still under investigation.

Various sources on Weibo claim that Yuan previously also suffered beatings at school, with severe school bullying being the main reason for the 15-year-old to temporarily drop out of school.

In a video report by Pear Video, Yuan’s father says they are still unsure of how their son died, suggesting he might have still been alive when he was buried in the pit.

China has been dealing with an epidemic of school violence for years. In 2016, Chinese netizens already urged authorities to address the problem of extreme bullying in schools, partly because minors under the age of 16 rarely face criminal punishment for their actions.

On social media site Weibo and on the news app Toutiao, many commenters are not just angered about the incident but also focus on China’s laws regarding the criminal responsibility of minors.

Some write: “Our criminal laws for minors should protect minors instead of protecting juvenile offenders!”

China’s criminal liability age is currently set at 14. Last month, Global Times reported on a proposal to lower the age of criminal liability in China from 14 to 12 in response to concerns about an alleged increase in juvenile violence.

“These minors need to be severely punished,” multiple commenters wrote: “Who knows who else they might hurt?”

By Manya Koetse

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us. First-time commenters, please be patient – we will have to manually approve your comment before it appears.

©2020 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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China Food & Drinks

Viral Video Exposes Wuhan Canteen Kitchen Food Malpractices

Boots in the food bowl, meat from the floor: this Wuhan college canteen is making a food safety mess.

Manya Koetse

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A video that exposes the poor food hygiene inside the kitchen of a Wuhan college canteen has been making its rounds on Chinese social media these days.

The video shows how a kitchen staff member picks up meat from the floor to put back in the tray, and how another kitchen worker uses rain boots to ‘wash’ vegetables in a big bowl on the ground, while another person is smoking.

The video was reportedly shot by someone visiting the canteen of the Wuhan Donghu University (武汉东湖学院) and was posted on social media on November 7.

According to various news sources, including Toutiao News, the school has confirmed that the video was filmed in their canteen, stating that those responsible for the improper food handling practices have now been fired.

The Wuhan Donghu University also posted a statement on their Weibo account on November 8, saying it will strengthen the supervision of its canteen food handling practices.

“The students at this school will probably vomit once they see this footage,” some commenters on Weibo wrote.

Wuhan Donghu University is an undergraduate private higher education institution established in 2000. The school has approximately 16,000 full-time undergraduate students.

“I’m afraid that this is just the tip of the iceberg,” one popular comment said, receiving over 25,000 likes.

Students from other universities also expressed concerns over the food handling practices in their own canteens, while some said they felt nauseous for having had lunch at the Wuhan canteen in question.

By Manya Koetse

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us. First-time commenters, please be patient – we will have to manually approve your comment before it appears.

©2020 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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