Sleep­ing cap­sules are laid to rest

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - COMMENT - EAR­LIER THIS MONTH,

some com­pa­nies in­stalled “shared sleep­ing cap­sules” in of­fice build­ings in Bei­jing and Shang­hai, which of­fice work­ers could rent for a nap dur­ing their lunchtime breaks. Yet the lo­cal author­i­ties in both mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties have shut them down, cit­ing fire haz­ards and other rea­sons. China Youth Daily com­ments:

The po­lice in Shang­hai said there were two main rea­sons for shut­ting down the cap­sules. First, the man­age­ment com­pa­nies did not ob­tain per­mis­sion from the fire depart­ment, se­cond, the cap­sules are in essence a ho­tel and the com­pa­nies did not get per­mis­sion to run a ho­tel.

Such sleep­ing cap­sules are con­ve­nient be­cause they help white-col­lar work­ers find a place to rest dur­ing their lunch breaks. How­ever, po­ten­tial chal­lenges do ex­ist: How to en­sure health and safety? How to check the iden­tity of users so that wanted crim­i­nals and sus­pects can­not use them?

These prob­lems must be an­swered be­fore the sleep­ing cap­sules are put into use. That’s why the lo­cal author­i­ties’ de­ci­sion to shut them down is the right move, be­cause it bet­ter pro­tects peo­ple’s safety be­fore

such ques­tions are an­swered.

The shut­ting down of the cap­sules is not nec­es­sar­ily bad news for the com­pa­nies that were pro­vid­ing them. They now know what they have to do to im­prove their op­er­a­tions so as to bet­ter serve the pub­lic.

Some call for tol­er­ance of the “sleep­ing cap­sules” as an emerg­ing busi­ness model. While the author­i­ties and the pub­lic need to show tol­er­ance, those of­fer­ing the cap­sules must fol­low the rules. Meet­ing health and safety re­quire­ments, as well as con­duct­ing ID checks, are nec­es­sary, and when the man­age­ment com­pa­nies meet these re­quired stan­dards, they will find their prod­ucts are wel­come.

We hope the cap­sules will soon be back with bet­ter and safer stan­dards.

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