Bunkyo Ward, Tokyo established guidelines for school teachers and city officials on how to deal with LGBTs to stop discrimination and harassment.

Bunkyo ward issued and handed out this card for residents’ education. On April 5th, Bunkyo Ward, Tokyo established the guidelines for school teachers and the city officials on how to deal with LGBTs to stop discrimination and harassment. It is such a rare case for a local municipality to establish the specific guidelines for dealing with LGBTs, according to Japan Alliance for LGBT Legislation(J-ALL) I will introduce some of what is written in the guidelines. The guidelines start from explaining the basic knowledge of LGBTs, sexual orientation, and gender identity. Chapter 2 : Dealing with residents.  “When it comes to
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Osaka the first city that allows same-sex couples to be foster parents.

A gay couple living in Osaka City has been recognized as foster parents in Osaka City. It is the first case in Japan that a gay couple became foster parents, according to municipal and central government officials. (there used to be a lesbian couple who was allowed to be a foster parent respectively and they started to live together with the foster child in Kanto region.) Last September, the gay couple sent their application form to the child guidance center to be foster parents. After taking multiple seminars required to deeply understand foster care system and its principles, the couple
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Sapporo City to certify same-sex partnership starting this June.

“Sapporo TV Tower”, the symbol of Sapporo City, is illuminated as rainbow in pride season On March 30th, Sapporo City announced the city will issue certificates that officially recognize same-sex partnership from this June. “Sapporo Partnership” was planned to be brought into effect this April, but it was postponed so that the city could have some time to make everyone in the city informed about it. The partnership system could have been mistaken for a system equivalent as marriage, so the city decided to explain the same-sex partnership certificate on its official website and PR magazine. For the recipients’ privacy,
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“Oriijin,” a new LGBTQ magazine to be published by DIAMOND, Inc.

On March 23rd, DIAMOND,Inc, one of the biggest business book publishers, has released its new magazine ,”Oriijin.” The new magazine was named after the Japanese word; “Nijiiro,” which means “rainbow.” “Oriijin” is the reverse reading of “Nijiiro.” “Oriijin” aims at providing an easily readable information on “diversity & inclusion” systems that have been introduced to many companies and issues facing LGBTQ community in Japan and in the world. The magazine repeatedly uses its newly coined word, “Kokoro Style,” which means a state of mind that respects, with responsibility, different values of others. If we have “Kokoro Style,” we can respects
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Grave-sharing service will start for same-sex couples.

“We would like to embrace sexual diversity by offering a grave to a same-sex couple.” ‘Shodaiji’ Temple, a temple of ‘Jodo Shinshu’ at Edogawa Ward, Tokyo, has announced a new service for same-sex couples who hope to share a grave together. In Japan, most people are buried at their family grave when they die. However, it has been difficult for same-sex couples to share a grave because same-sex couples are not legally treated as married. There is no laws that prohibit unmarried unions from getting buried in the same grave in Japan. However, according to Yokota Mutsumi, a senior research
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Tomoya Hosoda becomes Japan’s first trans man to be elected in Iruma City.

Mr. Hosoda speaking at Tokyo Rainbow Pride 2017(photo by Kakejiku) On March 12th, Tomoya Hosoda, 25, became the first openly transgender man to be elected in Iruma City, in the central region around Tokyo. Mr. Hosoda is the second transgender councilor in Japan. In 2003, Aya Kamikawa, a councilor at Setagaya Ward, Tokyo, became the first transgender councillor in Japan. There are four councillors from the LGBTQ community. Aya Kamikawa at Setagaya Ward(a transgender woman), Wataru Ishizaka at Nakano Ward(a gay man), Taiga Ishikawa at Toshima Ward(a gay man), and Mr.Hosoda in Iruma City. (An openly lesbian councillor, Kanako Otsuji,
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“Rainbow Diet” asks for enactment of a law that prohibits LGBT discrimination.

On March 9th, as many as three hundred participants gathered at First Diet Members’ Office Building to attend “Rainbow Diet”, a gathering that asks for enactment of a law aimed at achieving better understanding of LGBTs among the public and prohibiting LGBT discrimination. The gathering was filled with excitement. Twelve Diet members from “LGBT all-party parliamentary group,” Shigeaki Saegusa (a composer), Kazuyo Katsuma(an economic analyst), and personnels from Japan Business Federation and U.N made a speech respectively. LGBT participants appealed the importance of the law and a jurist gave a briefing on the law. (There was supposed to be a
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Satoshi Tsumabuki won the best supporting actor award at the Japan Academy Awards for playing a gay man in the film “RAGE.”

A scene from the film “RAGE” right: Satoshi Tsumabuki as Yuma left: Go Ayano as Naoto On March 3rd, the 40th Japan Academy Awards was held in Tokyo. Satoshi Tsumabuki and Go Ayano received the best supporting actor awards for playing a gay couple in the film “RAGE.” The film became a topic of conversation for depicting real lives of gay people in Japan. They are probably the first actors who received the Japan Academy Awards for playing gay men in Japan. “Thank you, thank you. I never thought this could happen tonight and I wouldn’t have received this award
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Revision to Basic Principles for Preventing Bullying asks for better understanding of LGBT students among school teachers.

It’s one scene from ”The Nail That Sticks Out Gets Hammered Down LGBT bullying and exclusion in Japanese schools”. The caption of this scene says “some teachers have direct homophobia”. Basic Principles for Preventing Bullying will be revised to stipulate LGBT students are also under the protection of the principles at educational institutions. On February 7th, Bullying Prevention Committee agreed on the revision to prevent bullying towards LGBT students. Manuals for dealing with bullying will be sent to schools. The manuals stipulate the importance of better understanding of sexuality, gender identity,and gender identity disorder and measures to be taken in
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A new housing listing service for same-sex couples by SUUMO.

The character of Recruit Sumai Company and its staff at Tokyo Rainbow Pride 2017 SUUMO, a well-known website for housings administrated by Recruit Sumai Company, is to launch a new housing listing service for same- sex couples starting this summer. They will be able to live together in the housings listed on the website. “There’s been a lot of voices from LGBT people crying for housings that accept same- sex couples. We hope to support the community by introducing LGBT-friendly housing owners to them.” Recruit Sumai Company commented on the new service. The company will start to add lists of
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