By Kim Eun-young, Kim Min-Jeung and Hahm Hee-eun
Photos = Cheong Wa Dae
President Moon Jae-in announced on Sept. 6 that, "’Inclusion’ is the key important value for our government. The country must be responsible for the lives of the people through their entire course of life in order to build a sustainable society. That is the start of an inclusive nation.”
An ”inclusive state” he said is one of the five national goals, referring to a welfare state where everyone can be embraced in safety by the state.
President Moon was speaking during his administration’s official “Strategy Meeting to Build an Inclusive State” at Cheong Wa Dae. He said that, “International organizations and other countries are advocating inclusive growth, wherein the benefits of growth are not monopolized by just a handful of people, but instead are shared by everyone around us. Our government should also accept ‘inclusion’ as a universal value.”
In order to establish an inclusive state, the president said, “We must strengthen the social safety net and welfare to reduce concerns about childbirth, raising kids and growing old, and create a society where labor is respected.” Furthermore, he added that, “We also need to stabilize gender equality and ensure the human rights and welfare of disabled people. I ask the government to quickly come up with a detailed, long-term road map to build an inclusive state.”
The first strategic conference of President Moon’s administration was held at Cheong Wa Dae on Sept. 6. Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon, the entire Presidential Commission on Policy Planning, and Cabinet members from departments related to social policies attended the meeting, which was held in response to social problems, such as polarization, a low birth rate, and an aging society.
The Presidential Commission on Policy Planning proposed ”boosting social unity,” ”securing social sustainability” and ”enhancing the ability for social innovation” as the three initiatives that should be pursued in order to form an inclusive society. Nine strategies were introduced at the meeting. In order to boost social unity, strategies such as strengthening basic income security and social insurance, relieving gaps in the labor market, and developing regional balances were introduced. To secure social sustainability, creating a birth-friendly environment and a policy for streamlining medical expenses were proposed. Finally, to enhance the chances of social innovation, strategies such as relieving the education gap and transitioning to an organizational culture were included.
With these strategies, the government is planning to come up with a three-year plan to guarantee a basic life to the people that includes an action plan for each department.