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Netizens divided over women-only airport security checkpoints

(People's Daily Online)    16:42, November 04, 2016

Baiyun Airport in Guangzhou has opened women-only security checkpoints, adding to the controversy over similar women-only lines in other trasnportation hubs.

A Baiyun Airport official explained that the special checkpoints serve to better protect the privacy of female passengers. They also offer women an all-around more pleasant experience. 

In March, the capital airport opened women-only security checkpoints, too. According to an airport employee, the most important function of the checkpoints is to improve traffic efficiency; it also protects women's privacy.

Shenzhen airport security said that, since the women-only checkpoints were opened in March, about 6,000 passengers have utilized them daily, and traffic efficiency has increased by 25 percent.

Internet users have expressed varying attitudes toward the women-only checkpoints. Some view them as a kind of discrimination, arguing that female passengers could face embarrassment if they don’t go to the gender-exclusive lines. Supporters believe that the lines offer women added privacy and convenience. One netizen joked, "This reflects the higher social status of women!"

However, several experts believe that the increasingly common practice is not sufficient or effective. Wang Xiying, associate professor at Beijing Normal University, noted that women-only checkpoints are not ideal because airports usually arrange for their female staff to perform security checks in those lines.

"With women-only checkpoints set up, women may feel embarrassed if they go to regular checkpoints," said Wang. "This could actually restrict their access to checkpoints.”

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Hongyu, Bianji)

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