Students of COC of the College of Social Science, other three Colleges and cleaning workers are holding a press conference in front of the Main Hall.
/Photography by Lee Da-young
Last September, a cleaning worker at Seoul National University died while having a break time in a resting room after work. Since then, people began to know that problems of working environment such as resting rooms of cleaning workers are serious and need to be solved as soon as possible.
In many places, there are voices calling for improvement of the cleaning workers’ resting environment. Yoo Eun-hye, the Minister of Education decided to improve facilities that do not meet the standards of the Ministry of Employment and Labor by this winter vacation. With this social issue, Dongguk University showed its own improvement, but it has stopped at the level of installing the air-conditioning system. However, a movement for cleaning workers was made at Dongguk University by College Operation Committee (COC) of College of Social Science. They interviewed cleaning workers and made efforts to share their poor environment with other students. In addition, they conducted the real condition survey of the resting environment with COC of the College of Humanities, Education and Business School. Ye-jin, the President of Emergency Committee of College of Social Science, said, “Dongguk University constantly have been required to improve worker’s environment but there were few changes. Therefore, COC of the College of Social Science conducted survey regarding the worker’s environment and shared this reality with students expecting them to have a problem consciousness.”
According to this survey, 16 out of 23 resting rooms for cleaning workers are located underground and their structure or location was not appropriate for rest. To inform students of the survey, the College of Social Sciences held a photo exhibition of cleaning workers inside the Social Science Hall. Kim Min-gu, the Freshman of the Department of Economics, said, “I became interested when I found out that the cleaning workers’ resting rooms are in poor condition and thought that the cleaning workers’ rooms should be treated better.”
As such, many students began to recognize the problem with interest in the environment of cleaning workers. This is not the end of their efforts. They held a press conference in front of the Main Hall on November 13th with cleaning workers. Students and workers accused the poor environment and called for better improvement of Dongguk University for the workers. They finished the press conference by delivering the request to the school. The school received the request and replied that they would consider it.
Through these students’ efforts and attention, Dongguk University will have to pay more attention and improve the working and resting environment of its cleaning workers. Ye-jin said, “Workers should be provided with a space for ‘rest.’ School need to make a real improvement, not just for show awaring of social trend.” She also added, “It is an important matter for students and workers who are not seriously considered when talking about changes in the school.”
Lee Da-young firstname.lastname@example.org
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