[Korea is not a 'drug-safe zone'] There is enforcement of native speaking instructors, but...Most of this article is utter crap (as in, 'completely uninformed'), but it's nice to see someone is still holding the fort at Anti English Spectrum. The Korean Association Against Drug Abuse rep also showed up in Sunday's NoCut News article on drugs. To begin:
Evading tested-for drugs like meth... If you have the gyopo F-4 visa, you don't do drug tests
In recent years gyopos have been pointed out as the main culprits involved with new kinds of drugs (sinjong mayak). As native speaking instructors have been caught time after time in drug crackdowns, their supervision and management have been strengthened, but as of yet gyopo drug crime management is still in a blind spot. Accordingly, it has been endlessly pointed out that drug testing and investigation into the drug-related criminal records of gyopos should be expanded.
◇ The Ministry of Justice [MOJ] has carried out drug monitoring for foreign English instructors. However...
Currently there are around 23,000 native speaking instructors living in Korea. Because of endless drug problems with native speaking English instructors, last year the MOJ amended the law. According to the revised law, foreigners working as instructors in language hagwons (outside of public education) who enter the country on conversation instruction (E-2) visas receive 2 drug tests per year if they are under suspicion of taking drugs. If after the first test they test positive again, they cannot have a visa issued or extended.
The standards for medical institutions doing the drug tests were also strengthened. To prevent the random issuing of native speaking instructor drug test results, it was made so that employment physical examination certificates had to be issued by commissioned outside institutions.
Nevertheless, there are still many gaps in the management of foreign drug crime. For example, the evasion of methamphetamine, the psychotropic drug that is often sold in Korea and is searched for in drug tests. Because the urine test implemented for foreigners resident in Korea cannot detect any drug use more than 1 or 2 weeks old, if one avoids taking drugs two weeks before the test, they can pass the test.
◇ Gyopo get a pass when it comes to drug tests and criminal record checks
According to the prosecutor's office, from 2006 to 2009, those arrested for smuggling drugs like marijuana were mostly hagwon instructors from English speaking countries. As the countries being smuggled from, such as Czech Republic, Netherlands, New Zealand, have been diversified, since 2010 there has been a change in this trend.
The Korean Association Against Drug Abuse planning and P.R. chief Lee Jeong-sam said, "Unlike in the past where drug dealing in Korea centered on some of them, in the last one or two years drug crime by gyopos has been increasing.
The reason for this increase in gyopo drug crime is that they find Korea's system of managing and monitoring them to be lenient. If gyopos come to Korea they are issued an F-4 visa, but unlike other foreigners, if they have this visa they don't receive criminal record checks or drug tests.
"Citizens for Upright English Education' (AES) member Yun Min-ok (33) said, "Although gyopos are required to submit health check certificates, the reality is that drug test records are currently excluded." "Standards for monitoring not only foreign instructors, but also gyopos should be strengthened."
Because of endless drug problems with native speaking English instructors, last year the MOJ amended the law.I enjoyed the endless foreign teacher drug crimes between August 2010 and April 2011, when not a single case was reported. Endless! As well, the MOJ did not amend the law, the national assembly did, and the law falls under the Ministry of Education's control. As well, there's that minor point that drug testing of E-2s began in 2007.
According to the revised law, foreigners working as instructors in language hagwons (outside of public education) who enter the country on conversation instruction (E-2) visas receive 2 drug tests per year if they are under suspicion of taking drugs. If after the first test they test positive again, they cannot have a visa issued or extended.I think what they mean to say is that, under the new system for E-2 visa holders introduced in January 2011, those who tested positive would be required to take a second, more precise and expensive test (specifically "a GC-Mass Spectrometer analysis to eliminate false positives"). Mind you, with the Ministry of Education implementing the hagwon law drug tests upon E-2 visa holders, some are getting tested twice this year. As well, the visa is already issued when they arrive and I imagine a positive result will lead to a more severe reaction than not being able to get a visa extended.
The article also repeats what is becoming a now known 'fact,' that urine tests are useless outside of a 1 or 2 week window (this page suggests that to be true for most drugs except marijuana, which could be detectable for up to a month depending on how often it's used).
According to the prosecutor's office, from 2006 to 2009, those arrested for smuggling drugs like marijuana were mostly hagwon instructors from English speaking countries. As the countries being smuggled from, such as Czech Republic, Netherlands, New Zealand, have been diversified, since 2010 there has been a change in this trend."Mostly hagwon instructors"? What a load of crap. When there was an increase in the number of foreign teachers arrested for smuggling in 2010 (the year the article says the trend in foreign teacher smuggling changed!), and it was even reported that "The main culprits in drug smuggling are native teachers", they actually made up 14% of those arrested in 2010 for smuggling. Obviously that number is quite high, but it's hardly in 'main culprit' territory. Needless to say, the assertions in the paragraph above can only have been made up.
In fact, those most responsible for drug smuggling into Korea, and indeed, throughout the world, during those heady years of 2006 to 2009, were a particular group of leprechauns from Northern Ireland. Far from being cheerful tiny green-clad midgets traversing rainbows looking for pots of gold, these were I.R.A.-trained agents who had fallen into a new line of work and would bare their fangs and kill customs agents with their bare hands as soon as the question, “Sir, could you open your suitcase, please?” was asked. Unfortunately, their tendency to, shall we say, intermingle led to their demise after one of the more adventurous ones had a one night stand with an English teacher in Korea, which led to HIV being spread throughout this leprechaun community. This, as we all know, then placed these foreign English teachers in a position to inherit a central place in the trade. One of the first things these teachers learned was that you should beware of drugs from the Czech Republic.
Creative writing projects like the above paragraph and above article aside, gyopos working in hagwons should be getting drug tests under the revised hagwon law, which calls for "non-citizens of the Republic of Korea" to submit a "health certificate (issued within the previous month and including the results of a drug and marijuana test)" when applying for a hagwon job. Those gyopos working under EPIK already get drug (and HIV!) tested. As for gyopos in general, I hardly think there have been enough arrests to justify testing 160,000 F-4 visa holders - the government is going to have a hard enough time doing all the testing for the half a million E-9 and H-2 visa holders that's supposed to begin in two weeks. Then again, there really haven't been enough arrests to justify the E-2 drug testing or E-9 and H-2 drug testing, so why should that stop the government? It is an election year after all, and playing to people's fears - and in Korea one of those fears will most certainly be foreigners - is always an easy way to get attention.