Why Hanoians need a ’Code of Conduct’

September, 20/2016 - 08:00

Is there a “code of conduct” for Hanoians? The question seems strange to many.

Volunteers help the elderly cross the streets of Hà Nội. --VNA/VNS Photo Doãn Tấn
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — Is there a “code of conduct” for Hanoians? The question seems strange to many.

“I’ve never heard of such a thing,” said Phạm Văn Thắng, who has lived in Hà Nội for almost 80 years.

But Thắng thinks a code of conduct is a good idea for Hanoians.

"We often witness bad behaviour - like students fighting, smoking or drinking alcohol and young people elbowing others out when standing in a queue, refusing to give up their seats to senior citizens, children and people with disabilities - so creating a code of conduct (CoC) for Hanoians is necessary to adjust their manners," Thắng said.

Nguyễn Khắc Lợi, deputy head of Hà Nội’s Department of Culture and Sports, said the Code is a basis for advocacy, guiding and educating people to live and behave in accordance with the norms of society.

The department used crowded places - such as residential areas, hospitals, offices, recreation centres and festivals - as arenas to fine-tune the code of conduct.

The CoC was scheduled to be promulgated last year but it was delayed due to a change in the targeted group.

Instead of the Code focusing on the whole city as planned, the Culture and Sports Department emphasized a focus on public areas, recreation centres, bus stations, museums, libraries, supermarkets and restaurants to make the Code easy to understand.

Once completed, the CoC will be formalised into concise rules which will be implemented at trial locations first.

Then administrative agencies, schools, hospitals and residential communities will create their own rules of behaviours, based on the CoC published by the department.

The CoC for public places is finished and will be issued by the Hà Nội People’s Commitee soon.

Đỗ Xuân Thủy, director general of Đồng Xuân joint stock company, said modern society should have a code of conduct as a standard for everyone to strive for.

"It was imperative for Đồng Xuân Market, where there were a large number of traders. We look forward to the issuance of the code of conduct, and we will disseminate it to businesses."

"The creation of a CoC had never been a more pressing and necessary requirement," Lê Thị Bích Hồng, deputy director of the Culture and Arts Department under the Central Committee for Propaganda Education, said.

To create positive changes in society, individuals and organisations should create appropriate CoCs for administrative agencies, schools, enterprises and residential areas, Hong told Hà Nội Mới (New Ha Noi) newpaper. Village regulations for Hà Nội must be included while creating these COCs, she said.

While many people welcomed the creation of the code of conduct, others opposed it.

“Creating a code of conduct was not really necessary for Hanoians whose ancestors have been here for generations, like me,” said Nguyễn Thùy Linh, a 40-year-old Hanoian, whose family has lived in the capital city for three generations.

Linh’s view was common among people who possess what is thought of as the elegance and courteous nature of Hanoians.

"Good behaviour should be taught by schools and families," said Lê Thu Trang, 38, another Hanoian.

"Hanoians whose ancestors orginated in Ha Nội behave differently than newcomers. They are more sensitive, polite and better behaved than others," she said.

"Hanoians inheritted good character from their ancestors and they preserve it, even now," Trang said. "The code of conduct for Hanoinans should take advantage of this."

"Whether the code of conduct by the Hà Nội’s Department of Culture and Sports will achieve desirable results or not depends on how agencies implement it and how the community will react," said Thắng.

He attributed the rampant use of foul language and other inappropriate behaviours of individuals to rapid urbanisation and expansion of the city.

"It isn’t an easy task that can be fulfilled in a short time," he said. -- VNS