Shanghai should allocate more playgrounds and facilities for children in residential areas to build itself into a “kids-friendly” city, Weng Wenlei, a CPPCC member and vice president of the Shanghai Women’s Federation, said at the annual session of the city’s political advisory body on Tuesday.
During a panel discussion, she said more than 90 percent of fitness facilities in communities are not suitable for children, some even expose the children to injury if used incorrectly.
The federation and the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences conducted surveys and investigations at more than 40 communities, involving more than 7,600 children and 7,800 parents.
About 80 percent of children surveyed said they needed a playground and entertainment facilities in communities, but less than half of them knew the address and opening times of such places.
Some 20 percent of respondents said it took more than half an hour to walk from their homes to children’s playground, and the distance can be even longer in suburban areas. Meanwhile, most playgrounds are designed for schoolchildren, meaning families of young kids, especially those under 3 years old, have few choices. About 30 percent of the kids said they had never been to a community playground.
“We suggest that the government’s responsibilities be clarified and that funds are ensured to cover supervision and management, staff training and resource allocation,” Weng said. “The city’s civil affairs bureau can spearhead the program and manage the overall construction and development of kids’ spaces in local communities.”