Grassroots turn up heat on Lam

Local | Sophie Hui 9 Oct 2018

Concern groups made a wish list ahead of tomorrow's policy address, including increasing the lunch subsidy for grassroots students.

One group, the Alliance for Children Development Rights, asked Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor to review the student subsidy items under the Comprehensive Social Security Assistance Scheme.

The alliance's Cheung Chin-kiu said the government has failed to review such items for grassroots students for more than 10 years.

"Many subsidy items are outdated, or the subsidy does not cover things necessary for students today like school uniforms, computers, and expenses on extracurricular activities," he said.

Cheung brought up the example of how the current lunch subsidy for CSSA students is HK$285 a month, which is insufficient as they have to spend more than HK$300 a month.

The children rights' group hopes the government will review the subsidy items to protect the learning rights for kids.

In a press conference yesterday, the Concerning Grassroots' Housing Rights Alliance urged the government to increase the ratio of public housing supply, and take back the Fan Ling golf course to build public housing.

It also called on the government to launch rent controls to improve the lives of people living in subdivided flats.

Meanwhile, the Hong Kong Research Association interviewed 1,094 citizens from September 28 to October 4, asking them what the government should set as its priorities. The higher the rating for the policy, the more important people thought it was.

More than half of the respondents in the survey gave a five out of five rating to land and housing.

Around 58 percent also urged Lam to announce measures on expanding land in the policy address before the results of the land supply consultation are released.

People also gave a high rating to health-care policy (3.79), and education (3.52).

The Kowloon Federation of Associations also interviewed 2,830 citizens, with its survey showing that 36.7 percent of respondents were most concerned about land and housing policy, while 31.9 percent were worried about welfare policy.

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