Press Release: First NGO FRANCA meetings Sendai Mar 15, Osaka Mar 25


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BACKGROUND: FRANCA as an idea was first conceived last November, in the wake of the Japanese Government’s decision to fingerprint almost all Non-Japanese residents whenever they re-enter Japan. This caused great consternation amongst NJ residents and taxpayers, who disliked being officially associated with criminals, terrorists, and carriers of infectious diseases “There are many interest groups out there that support minority views, but none for long-term NJ residents and immigrants,” was the sentiment. So throughout December and January, FRANCA as a group was established, with the intention of formally registering as an NGO with the Japanese government by the end of 2008.

In the wake of our first FRANCA meeting in Tokyo last January, we decided to chair two more meetings around Japan, organized by local members, to spread the word. Arudou Debito will discuss the hows and whys of creating this NGO. Those dates are:

Sat March 15 6PM-8PM
Sendai FRANCA inaugural meeting
Sendai Fukushi Plaza Meeting Room 2 (10F), by Itsutsubashi subway station)

Tues March 25, 7PM-9PM
Osaka FRANCA inaugural meeting
Osaka Shiritsu Shimin Gakushuu Center 4F

FRANCA’s information website is

Open to the public. Admission free. More about what we stand for:

The Foreign Residents’ And Naturalized Citizens Association (FRANCA) Japan commits itself to:

1. equal and nondiscriminatory treatment for all foreign residents and naturalized citizens in Japan;
2. their fair representation and inclusion in Japan’s economic and social processes;
3. the promotion of positive perceptions of non-Japanese peoples and multiple cultures in Japanese society.

1. To eliminate negative public images and stereotypes of non-Japanese and multi-cultural Japanese.
2. To eliminate discrimination by race, nationality, ethnicity, and national origin.
3. To highlight the benefits of immigration and a multi-cultural society.

To this end, FRANCA works to achieve these goals through sustainable and effective lobbying, networking and public relations campaigns aimed at educating the public.

Thanks for reading. Hope to see you there!
Arudou Debito in Sapporo (

Our online discussion group may be found at:

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3 comments on “Press Release: First NGO FRANCA meetings Sendai Mar 15, Osaka Mar 25

  • Not directly FRANCA related, but pertinent nonetheless. I just happened across this article, with two links confirming the details….and it appears that the British Airport Authority has just decided to fingerprint and photograph domestic passengers prior to boarding!

    Heathrow airport first to fingerprint
    David Millward and Gordon Rayner
    London Telegraph
    Sunday, March 9, 2008
    Millions of British airline passengers face mandatory fingerprinting before being allowed to board flights when Heathrow’s Terminal 5 opens later this month.
    For the first time at any airport, the biometric checks will apply to all domestic passengers leaving the terminal, which will handle all British Airways flights to and from Heathrow.
    The controversial security measure is also set to be introduced at Gatwick, Manchester and Heathrow’s Terminal 1, and many airline industry insiders believe fingerprinting could become universal at all UK airports within a few years.
    All four million domestic passengers who will pass through Terminal 5 annually after it opens on March 27 will have four fingerprints taken, as well as being photographed, when they check in.
    To ensure the passenger boarding the aircraft is the same person, the fingerprinting process will be repeated just before they board the aircraft and the photograph will be compared with their face.
    BAA, the company which owns Heathrow, insists the biometric information will be destroyed after 24 hours and will not be passed on to the police.
    It says the move is necessary to prevent criminals, terrorists and illegal immigrants trying to bypass border controls

  • “…It says the move is necessary to prevent criminals, terrorists and illegal immigrants trying to bypass border controls..”

    So it is applicable to all boarding the aircraft; black, white, pink, yellow etc….which is fair enough. The MO is clear.

  • Thanks to DR for posting this information about the new Heathrow policy.

    I find the constrast here in Japan interesting. Recently I am taking a lot of domestic flights, and there is essentially no security in terms of identity verification. With ANA, you can buy tickets online, and receive a number. At the terminal you just walk up to a machine, type in the number, and get your boarding pass. The bar code on the pass gets you through the rest of the way onto the plane. Never once do you need to show ID or otherwise confirm your identity. I even had a colleague buy a ticket in my name with his credit card. He handed me the paper ticket and I was able to check in via the machines without showing any ID or even talking with anyone. For convenience, the system is fantastic. But it renders questionable the claims that security is a priority here.

    Of course, I don’t want to give them any ideas here or they might introduce new security checks – for NJ only.



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