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SOSC 200Y Gender and Society Lecture 21: Women and the State.

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Presentation on theme: "SOSC 200Y Gender and Society Lecture 21: Women and the State."— Presentation transcript:

1 SOSC 200Y Gender and Society Lecture 21: Women and the State

2 L21: 22.11.06 Role of the state Contradicting role of the capitalist state  Torn between the 2 demands

3 L21: 22.11.06 Hong Kong’s labour policies 1988: the Women and Young Persons, Industry (Amendment) Regulations –Maternity leave –Resting facilities –Restricting overtime work 1995: the Sex Discrimination Ordinance –To restrain discrimination against women both in the recruitment or promotion process 1996: the Equality Opportunities Commission

4 L21: 22.11.06 Protection vs Discrimination Protecting (working) women? –Debates within feminism –Reinforce the domestic role of women? –A discriminating act or an anti-discrimination policy in a capitalist society? Ineffective legal intervention –Problems in their implementation –The sincerity of the state

5 L21: 22.11.06 Selective benefits 1. Social security –Contributory principle (e.g. old age pensions, MPF) –Not for those without a proper employment 2. Invalidity care allowance –Not for married women 3. Public assistance –The aggregate principle –Married added with husband

6 L21: 22.11.06 Other welfare for the dependence Disabled: –Early education and training centers, special schools and workshops, multiservice centers Elderly: –Home helps, social centers for the elderly, elderly home Children: –Child care facilities, day care center  Enlisting women and mother’s help:  All of these caring work for the dependent groups in our society fall on women’s shoulders.

7 L21: 22.11.06 Social welfare in Hong Kong Role of social welfare (evil) –Minimal intervention –Rely on families’ support Espousing the family ideology in welfare measures Limited provision of supporting services Mother/ daughter/ daughter-in-laws (not the community) are the best caretakers

8 L21: 22.11.06 Women and the state Other social policies: –Children’s welfare –Educational policies –Urban planning and housing policies –Legal status of women: custody, income maintenance Constructing and maintaining the ideology of nuclear family and domestic ideal

9 L21: 22.11.06 Role of women in the politics Political power, 2004  Members of the Executive Council (4/21)  Members of the Legislative Council (11/60)  Members of the District Councils (18%)  Civil servants (33.6%)

10 L21: 22.11.06 Suggested Readings: Kwok, P.L. et al. (1997) "Women and the State in Hong Kong," in F. Cheung (ed.) Engendering Hong Kong Society, Hong Kong: CU press

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