China to regulate bad behaviour, says no to spitting

August 17th, 2012 - 6:05 pm ICT by IANS  

Beijing, Aug 17 (IANS) China wants to regulate bad public behaviour like spitting, littering and cutting in line, said a state-run Chinese daily Friday.

An article in the Op-Ed section of Global Times said the nation’s first legislation to regulate bad public behaviour such as spitting and littering is being drafted in Shenzhen, Guangdong province.

“Many are applauding this pioneering effort. However, the heated debate on whether the urban management bureau should enforce the proposed regulations has also come with controversy,” it said.

A China Youth Daily report Wednesday said that the draft to promote civilized public behaviour also stipulated that chengguan, or urban management officers, could punish those guilty of the 10 most common uncivilized actions in public places such as spitting and cutting in line.

The daily said: “City management is often troubled by bad public behaviour. Normally, people restrain themselves in public through a sense of morality, but when morality cannot guarantee social civility, laws are needed to punish this kind of behaviour.”

“In this sense, Shenzhen’s legislative effort has some positive significance. Singapore has set up a good example in this respect. Bad public behaviour such as drunken driving and spitting can be punished with heavy fines. But it is the police who have the right to fine violators in Singapore, as well as other countries and regions such as Japan and Hong Kong,” it added.

The stressed that combating “uncivilized public behaviour through legislation is laudable, but the local government should reflect more on how to guarantee civilized methods of law enforcement by chengguan”.

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