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Shenzhen to Launch China’s First Women-Only Subway Cars

Shenzhen is going to run a trial with women-only subway cars for the convenience and safety of female passengers. On Weibo, many netizens do not agree with the plan to segregate male and female passengers.

Qing Yan

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Shenzhen is going to run a trial with women-only subway cars for the convenience and safety of female passengers. On Weibo, many netizens do not agree with the plan to segregate male and female passengers.

Shenzhen is introducing China’s first women-only subway cars. A standing member of the city’s municipal committee confirmed the new measure recently, NetEase reports. Two to three operating lines will be picked out for trial rides before wider implementation. The train carriages will only be ‘women-only’ within the busiest hours. Beyond these hours, male passengers are also free to enter these trains.

The decision follows a proposal by Guangdong’s Political Consultative member Su Zhongyang (苏忠阳) titled “Regarding Setting up Women-Only Carriages on Guangzhou’s Metro Lines” (关于广州地铁设立女性专用车厢) which pointed out that female passengers are more vulnerable to sexual harassment or inappropriate situations in overcrowded trains during peak hours.

“There may be too many people inside a train during rush hour, making body contact between passengers inevitable. This can be tricky as it might instigate sexual harassment,” Su Zhongyang noted. In addition to his role in politics, Su is also the president of a local company in Guangzhou.

The proposal mentions a recent poll in which 81.9% of respondents believed that sexual harassment occurs on the metro. 21.6% believed it occurs frequently. “The issue is more serious during Guangzhou’s summer, ” Su said: “During the long summers many women wear shorts and are more vulnerable to sexual harassment.”

But the reality seems to paint a much milder picture. According to the statistic from Guangzhou Public Security Bureau, a total of 74 cases of sexual harassment have been reported from 2015 up to the present. The crime rates at Guangzhou’s metro stations have been the lowest of all members in CoMET* for many years. (*CoMET: Community of Metro, a global organization joined by 32 major metro operators worldwide.)

The majority of Chinese netizens also did not seem to agree with Su’s stance. On Weibo, an online poll by China News Service showed that 59.7% of respondents opposed the measure, saying it goes against gender equality and is a form of sex-based discrimination.

“What’s next? Should we tell women not to leave the house in order to protect their safety?”, one netizen wondered. “Segregating women from men is not the way to solve the problem of sexual harassment,” others said.

Many commenters did say the subway should have a special space for pregnant women, as entering an overcrowded carriage with a big belly might be risky for them.

Another issue that is highlighted, is that the women-only carriages might lead to a waste of traffic resources. Guangzhou subway staff told Chinese media that creating “women-only trains” does not necessarily mean that all female passengers will choose to ride them. Because male passengers will not enter them during peak hours, it might lead to more congestion in other carriages.

Despite ongoing criticism, Wang Rong, the Chairman of Guangdong’s Political Consultative Conference, is optimistic about the initiative: “Adding women-only carriages will have a significant impact on issues such as public transport and citizens’ rights. And, most importantly, it may help to boost the image of our city – it shows our care for humanity and for a civilized society.”

By Qing Yan

Edited by Manya Koetse.
©2017 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

Qing Yan is a Shanghai-based copywriter and analyst, specialized in Chinese marketing and luxury brands. Besides his expertise in marketing analysis, Zhejiang-born Qing is a bilingual reporter with a focus on Chinese history, culture, and politics.

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3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Ed Sander

    June 10, 2017 at 5:55 am

    “But the reality seems to paint a much milder picture. According to the statistic from Guangzhou Public Security Bureau, a total of 74 cases of sexual harassment have been reported from 2015 up to the present.”

    That does not prove that it does not happen. Perhaps the women are too ashamed to report the occurrences or they think that reporting it will not help anyway.

    Seperating male and females is however a dumb solution because it does not solve the cause of the problem.

    Ed

  2. Avatar

    Bailey

    June 13, 2017 at 12:53 pm

    The subway cars will be ‘female priority,’ not ‘female only.’ Men will be allowed to enter if there’s room left over in the cars. I’m not sure where the last two sentences in the first paragraph of this article came from, but it’s not any official source I’ve read.

    For reference: http://www.sznews.com/news/content/2017-06/08/content_16400604.htm

    • Avatar

      admin

      June 13, 2017 at 2:48 pm

      Hi Bailey,we will check again with the author. But various sources say that the cars will be “women only” (or as you say “women priority” 女性专用) during peak hours (“对于这样做可能增加地铁运行成本的担忧,苏忠阳介绍,高峰期时将列车一节车厢临时设为女性车厢,这样设计不需要增加任何费用,仅需在电子屏上显示提醒,增加女性乘客的选择”) and not outside of the peak hours. http://www.sohu.com/a/147587625_123753

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China and Covid19

Anger over Guangzhou Anti-Epidemic Staff Picking Locks, Entering Homes

While these Guangzhou homeowners were quarantined at a hotel, anti-epidemic staff broke their door locks and entered their homes.

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WEIBO SHORT | Weibo Shorts are concise articles on topics that are trending. This article was first published

Dozens of homeowners in Guangzhou, Guangdong, were angered to find out the locks of their apartment doors were broken during their mandatory hotel quarantine.

The residents had gone to a quarantine location after a positive Covid case in their building. Afterward, anti-epidemic staff had entered their homes for disinfection and to check if any residents were still inside.

The incident happened earlier this month in an apartment complex in the Liwan district of the city.

The incident first gained attention on July 10 when various videos showing the broken door locks were posted online. During the morning, the property management had conducted an ’emergency inspection’ of 84 households. The doors were later sealed.

The case went trending again on July 18 when the residential district apologized to all homeowners for the break-ins and promised to compensate them.

“What’s the use of apologizing?” some Weibo commenters wondered. “Where is the law? If this even happens in Guangzhou now and people in Guangdong put up with this, what else will they dare to do in the future?”

On Chinese social media, most comments on the Guangzhou incident were about the break-ins allegedly being unlawful.

Media reporter and Toutiao author Kai Lei (@凯雷), who has over two million followers on Weibo, said the incident showed that those breaking in “had no regard for the law.”

To read more about Covid-19 in China, check our articles here.

By Manya Koetse
With contributions by Miranda Barnes

 

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China Local News

Shanghai Ruijin Hospital Stabbing Incident

The police opened fire and subdued the suspect, who stabbed at least four people at Shanghai’s Ruijin Hospital on Saturday.

Manya Koetse

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WEIBO SHORT | Weibo Shorts are concise articles on topics that are currently trending. This article was first published

On Saturday July 9, a stabbing incident that occurred at Shanghai’s renowned Ruijin Hospital (上海瑞金医院) shocked Chinese netizens as videos showing the panic and chaos at the scene circulated in Wechat groups and on Weibo.

At around 11:30 AM the police department started receiving calls that there was someone stabbing people at the hospital, which is located in the city’s Huangpu district. At the scene of the incident, at the 7th floor of the outpatient clinic, they found a knife-wielding man holding a group of people hostage.

According to police reports, the police opened fire and subdued the suspect. Four people who were injured during the knife attack are now being treated, none of them are in a life-threatening situation.

The case is currently under investigation.

According to The Paper, Ruijin Hospital resumed its outpatient services at 14:08 this afternoon.

This is the second stabbing incident in Shanghai this week. On Monday, a man was arrested after going on a random stabbing spree in Shanghai’s Jing’an District.

While some Shanghai residents say the recent incidents made them feel less safe, others praise the fast police response to the incident.

One doctor from Shanghai posted on Weibo that hospitals should have proper security checks in place in order to prevent these kinds of incidents from happening again in the future.

By Manya Koetse
With contributions by Miranda Barnes

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