[WORD_ON_THE_WEB] 'The government exists to care for people'

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[WORD_ON_THE_WEB] 'The government exists to care for people'

A man in his 70s who lived by himself in Gangdong District, eastern Seoul, was found dead in his home. He was living on government subsidies.
The body was found at the man's home in Seongnae-dong at around 7:30 p.m. of March 20. His landlord, who lived in the same building, called the police when he had not seen the man for almost two weeks. He also reported a smell coming from the first-floor room in which the man lived.
According to the Gangdong District Office, the man was visited monthly by social workers. The most recent visit had been on Feb. 25.
The man didn’t keep in contact with his neighbors or family members. Police announced that the man likely died from complications related to a long-term illness.
“Visiting once in a month doesn’t seem like enough. Shouldn’t they check at least once a week, considering the person’s age? How hard is it to give a call? Things like that shouldn’t be a mere formality. No office is too busy to do this much.”
“I think the monitoring term should be fixed to two weeks. One month is way too long.”
“Anyone could be alone when they’re old and sick. The government should support the elderly more. That’s what determines a welfare state.”
“Technology is advancing so fast, but no technology is enough to help people like this. It makes me so sad. The government exists to care for people — helping them is the definition of welfare.”
“Don’t fool around with the tax budget. Please, use the money in the right place.”
“Screw moving the presidential office. Caring for the elderly who need help is more important!”

BY LEE SI-YEOUNG, YOO JI-WOO [yoo.jiwoo@joongang.co.kr]
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