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  • Public Meeting: NGOs protest new Gaijin Card System Sat Jan 24 Tokyo

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on January 21st, 2009

    Handbook for Newcomers, Migrants, and Immigrants to Japan\Foreign Residents and Naturalized Citizens Association forming NGO\「ジャパニーズ・オンリー 小樽入浴拒否問題と人種差別」(明石書店)JAPANESE ONLY:  The Otaru Hot Springs Case and Racial Discrimination in Japan
    ———————————————————————
    Public gathering against the government’s new plan
    to introduce “Zairyu Kaado (resident card)” system

    We want a system for a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural society, but not for control!
    ———————————————————————
    Date: Saturday, 24 January 2009
    Time: 14:00 – 17:00
    Venue: B1F, YMCA Asia Youth Center
    2-5-5 Sarugaku-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, 101-0064, Japan
    JR Suidobashi sta. 6min, Ochanomizu sta. 9min, Subway Jimbocho sta 7min
    http://www.ymcajapan.org/ayc/jp/
    Admission: 500 yen
    Simultaneous translation service available (Japanese-English)

    Organized by:
    NGO Committee against the introduction of “Zairyu Kaado (resident card)” system

    For further information:
    Research-Action Institute for The Koreans in Japan (RAIK)
    TEL: 03-3203-7575 raik@abox5.so-net.ne.jp
    Solidarity Network with Migrants Japan (SMJ)
    TEL: 03-5802-6033 fmwj@jca.apc.org

    http://www.jca.apc.org/migrant-net/

    Program

    • 1. A short documentary video on a public action in front of the Ministry of Justice
    • against a new fingerprinting system on 20 November 2007
    • 2. Report 1 Framework of the new Immigration Control System
    • By Mr. Akira Hatate(Japan Civil Liberties Union: JCLU)
    • 3. Report 2 Overview of the ‘Jumin Touroku (Residents Registration System)’
    • By Mr. Tohru Nishimura (HanJukinet Renrakukai)
    • 4. Report 3 Problems and concerns over ‘Zairyu Kaado (resident card)’
    • By Mr. Mitsuru Namba (Attorney)
    • 5. Relay talk by foreign national citizens
    • 6. Relay appeals by NGOs:
    • 7. NGO joint statement against the “Zairyu Kaado (resident card)” system

    ******************************
    The Ministry of Justice is currently pressing forward measures aiming at integrating personal information of foreign residents in Japan. A revised bill of the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act is expected to be discussed during the ordinary diet session in 2009 to abolish the current ‘Gaikokujin Torokusho’ (alien registration card)’ and introduce a new ‘Zairyu Kaado’ (resident card), which will be issued directly from the Ministry of Justice. However, we, NGOs are concerned that once a ‘Zairyu Kaado’ is introduced, control over foreigners would be more tightened. We particularly fear that foreign residents without VISA status such as overstayers would be excluded from the new resident registration system (“Gaikokujin Daicho Seido”) and lose access to most of public services including education and medical care. Thus the system would make these people socially invisible.

    In this public gathering, we, NGOs and foreign national citizens, will discuss the framework of the bill (abolishing the ‘Gaikokujin Torokusho’and introducing a ‘Zairyu Kaado’) and the issues that might occur when the new system is introduced. We will also propose a new system toward a true Multi-Ethnic, Multi-Cultural Society in Japan.

    *****************************************************
    川上園子
    社団法人アムネスティ・インターナショナル日本
    ホームページ:http://www.amnesty.or.jp/
    101-0054 東京都千代田区神田錦町2-2 共同(新錦町)ビル4F
    TEL. 03-3518-6777 FAX. 03-3518-6778
    E-mail:ksonoko@amnesty.or.jp
    ★アムネスティ・メールマガジンのお申し込みはこちらから!
    http://secure.amnesty.or.jp/campaign/

    ENDS

    3 Responses to “Public Meeting: NGOs protest new Gaijin Card System Sat Jan 24 Tokyo”

    1. Tony D Says:

      “We particularly fear that foreign residents without VISA status such as overstayers would be excluded from the new resident registration system (“Gaikokujin Daicho Seido”) and lose access to most of public services including education and medical care.”

      I’m a bit confused on this point. Wouldn’t these people be arrested and deported if they were discovered anyway…?

    2. Murphy Says:

      What Tony D said. Illegals should not have access to public services, they should be deported. Giving illegals access to such services may sound nice but it does not help them – by quasi-legitimizing them, it opens the door to further abuse by employers.

      The Zairyu Card, at least from what I have heard about it, seems like a very good idea and a real improvement over the current system. Foreigners cannot currently, for example, be setai nushi for anyone but themselves. If a foreigner marries a Japanese, at least they can opt to let their Japanese partner be setai nushi (and there are more than a few legal and procedural reasons why it is good to have a “normal” household with one setai nushi only). If two foreigners marry, each is their own setai nushi, with little to show they are married (at the city or town administrative level). If they have kids, there are more difficulties. Towns with large foreign populations such as are in Aichi have a heck of a time providing services properly or getting kids registered for school due to this “every foreigner is an island” current registration system. It seems the system was never designed for the possibility of permanent, settled foreign residents.

      This new system looks to take care of that and introduce a parallel system roughly equal to what Japanese citizens have. And this is a bad thing because…?

      [further tangental iyami snipped]

    3. Shiro Ishii Says:

      While I don’t necessarily agree that everyone who is undocumented ought to be summarily deported, I also wonder how the new system would be more stringent than the current one in preventing people from receiving services. Perhaps there is funding and specification of more thoroughgoing and intrusive enforcement?

      Another question I have is due to the usual vague and contradictory stuff in the official media. Will people classed as resident aliens under this proposed system indeed have a registration “parallel” to the one for people classed as natives, and thus be “separate but more smoothly unequal”, or could an “alien” de facto head of household, for example, be listed in the “proper” system as a spouse and parent of “natives”?

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