C1 Listening Social Issues

• What is something that you or perhaps your country takes for granted?

The weather and the low cost of healthy meals are a few things I believe many citizens of my country take for granted. Something such as the sun increases general happiness, productivity, socialization, health benefits like Vitamin D and more opportunity to be outdoors in nature or participating in sport. Some people may not realize its importance until they have lived a winter in the mountains. Also having access to fresh fruits and vegetables or local products allows healthy eating right in your backyard at a cost that is quite affordable. Having such produce in your region allows all families with every income to afford healthy meal options.

• Is there a large disparity between the upper class and lower class within your society? What do you think is to blame?

Yes. I do think there is a huge disparity between social classes in my country, there are many factors that would be to blame such as the economic crisis, unemployment rate, political parties governing, income inequality and the lack of sheer luck. This doesn’t mean it is impossible to come out of a lower social economic status but it may take generations or relentless attitude of hard work and determination to achieve it. Many people born into families with money or education take for granted that advantage alone and forget not all of us are born with equal opportunity and resources.

• What is homelessness like in your city and how does the city combat such an issue to help these people get back on their feet?

Homelessness isn’t something very prevalent in my city probably because it is smaller and perhaps there are less opportunities or access to facilities one would need if homeless. To alleviate such a problem and help these people back on their feet, the community must take action by raising awareness concerning the issue and perhaps putting a proposal together to present to the city hall. Something that would truly make a positive impact like a shelter or a class incorporating them back into society.

• Have you ever attended or put on a demonstration or protest? What were you protesting?

Yes, I have protested to stand up for myself and to the rest of the women who had experienced similar situations. I was protesting to get equal rights and equal pay at my job, which at the time I was the Chief Officer of my department and was earning less wages than my male counterparts. We both had the same responsibilities and same capabilities to do our job well. In the end our Chief Executive Officer had said he would work something out but that was a line he used to get me to calm down, I ended up quitting and it was the best decision I have ever made.

• Do you think there is a lot of privilege that goes unchecked in your country?
• What are the most prevalent social issues in your country? How do you feel about welfare benefits?