South Korea Will Pay $490 Per Month to Reclusive Teenagers to Get Them to Leave Their Houses


Is it videogame addiction, dating apps, the constant dopamine hit provided by current technology, or the late-stage capitalism crushing the youths of today? We might not know exactly which factor is to blame for teenagers withdrawing from society but South Korea is willing to pay them $490 per month to get them out of the house.

Also read: China Enforces Gaming Curfew For Minors

The condition was dubbed “hikikomori”, the Japanese term for “to pull back”. South Korea is facing such an unprecedented number of hikikomori teens, they’re about to pay them a monthly allowance of 650,000 won ($490) to encourage them to engage with society again.

From a report:

Included in the program announced this week, which expands on measures announced in November, is a monthly allowance for living expenses for people aged between nine and 24 who are experiencing extreme social withdrawal. It also includes an allowance for cultural experiences for teenagers. About 350,000 people between the ages of 19 and 39 in South Korea are considered lonely or isolated — about 3% of that age group — according to the Korea Institute for Health and Social Affairs. Secluded youth are often from disadvantaged backgrounds and 40% began living reclusively while adolescents, according to a government document outlining the measures.

The new measures aim to strengthen government support “to enable reclusive youth to recover their daily lives and reintegrate into society,” the government said in a statement. Among the other types of support are paying for the correction of affected people’s physical appearance, including scars “that adolescents may feel ashamed of,” as well as helping with school and gym supplies. South Korea also has a relatively high rate of youth unemployment, at 7.2%, and is trying to tackle a rapidly declining birthrate that further threatens productivity.

Under the program, children and young people between the ages of 9 and 24 could be helped.

Also read: China Enforces Gaming Curfew For Minors

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