Abstracts & Papers in Stream 4

In view of the rising trend of population ageing, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government had launched a series of reforms in long term care for the elderly since 2000. While based on the guiding principles of "ageing in place" and "continuum of care", the reforms were essentially built on the idea of mixed economy of care. Instead of relying on state provision alone, it was suggested that the care of the elderly could be delivered by a variety of sources, including families, neighbors, voluntary, non-governmental and private sectors.
These long term care reforms included an emphasis on community care, the support to family carers, the increase in reliance on private sectoras service providers, the establishment of gate-keeping mechanismfor targeting service recipients, the promotion of accreditation system for residential homes, the introduction of competitive bidding in the selection of subsidized service operators, and the exploration of means-testing and the use of voucher in long term care.
The purpose of this paper is to critically examine these long term care reforms in Hong Kong in the past decade from 2000 to 2010. A qualitative approach is adopted which include literature review of policy documents,statistics and service data and academic researches, as well as interviews of informants. It is hoped that the analysis can shed light on the development of long term care policies in other East Asian societies experiencing population ageing.

Narrating Men's Problem from a Gender Perspective

While there is a substantial effort in promoting women services in Hong Kong in the last decade, men's service is still underdeveloped. This partly reflects that changing men is much more difficult than changing women, which is especially true under a strong patriarchal culture in Chinese societies such as Hong Kong. One of the strongest hindrances is the taken for granted belief that pursuing gender equality is women's business. To date, many social services agencies have started to provide services for men. However, many men's services and men's group only resort to pragmatism and common sense approach in response to men's problems which often stemmed from dominant patriarchal ideology.

The study attempts to understand men's problems from a gender perspective. To capture the complexities of the problems, we had employed both quantitative and qualitative methodologies to collect data via telephone interviews and in-depth interviews in this study. We have successfully telephone interviewed 547 adult men aged from 18 to 65 to understand their views on different sources of pressure including work, economic situations, family relationship, human relationship, personal development, health and social status. To further explore the perceptions and discourses of their problems, we had selected 10 respondents for in-depth interviews including lone father, male perpetuator of domestic violence, unemployed man, man with disability, ethnic minorities, sex worker, full-time carer, middle-class man and man on benefits. The study showed that most of the problems that respondents faced can be traced to the fixation of male gender role and the structure of gender practice dominating our society. By reframing men's problem from a gender perspective, we can open up new alternatives in solving men's problem and achieving gender equality in society.

Social rights in Korean welfare state have been exclusively associated with a person's capacity to perform paid work. Improvements in the labour market participation thus would allow women more access to benefits. The inclusion also, more importantly, depends on the rules and conditions under which social welfare benefits pay out. Since the economic crisis 97/98 in Korea, active welfare paradigm had run throughout Kim Dae Jung (1998-2002) and Rho Moo Hyun government (2003-2007). Consequently, it has changed the institutional arrangements of welfare provisions noticeably. This paper examines the extent to which the welfare settlements after the crisis in Korea are inclusive of women taking the case of pension reforms. As a background, it discusses socio-demographic changes with special attention to the impact of economic globalization on labour market and the demand for women's labour. In analyzing the social insurance policy reforms, we focus on the coverage, the entitlements and the level of benefits. This paper tentatively concludes that the emerged welfare arrangements will open more doors to women, but for women, the new welfare settlements are "exclusive".