A new report from the Human Rights Watch (HRW) identifies ongoing problems in schools around Japan – despite government attempts to improve the situation since its first report in 2001. Students report being told they’re ‘disgusting’ and ‘shouldn’t have been born’ by other students.
This year the government will reassess the Bulling Prevention Act as part of a mandatory review; the HRW have urged the government to change their policy.The Japanese government has made gestures of support to LGBT students in recent years, but national anti-bullying policies remain silent on sexual orientation and gender identity,’ Kanae Doi, the director at HRW in Japan, said. ‘The government should urgently bring its policies to protect LGBT students in line with international standards and best practices.’There has been progress in Japan recently. The HRW report notes that in high profile cases of LGBTI bullying, like the suicide of a teenager in 1991, the government has made assurances it will improve schools’s approach to bullying.Last year, Shibuya ward, Tokyo, started recognizing same sex relationships.