Japan Press Weekly
[Advanced search]
Past issues
Special issues
Fact Box
Feature Articles
Mail to editor
Mail magazine
Blog [Japanese]
HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 April 18 - 24  > Unionized female reporters issue joint statement condemning sexual harassment
> List of Past issues
Bookmark and Share
2018 April 18 - 24 TOP3 [LABOR]

Unionized female reporters issue joint statement condemning sexual harassment

April 22 & 24, 2018
Unionized female journalists have recently issued a joint statement declaring that they will no longer tolerate sexual harassment.

They adopted this statement at a rally held by the Japan Federation of Newspaper Workers' Unions (Shimbun Roren) on April 21 and 22 in Tokyo, protesting against the sexual harassment that former Vice Finance Minister Fukuda Jun'ichi had perpetrated against a female TV Asahi reporter.

In the statement, they express their respect to the reporter for her decision to accuse Fukuda of targeting her with obscene remarks and also express their sympathy to her because the accusation was not taken seriously at first when she resolved to inform her boss of the act while hoping that the boss would protect her. They say they are determined to stand up to acts of sexual harassment, following her courageous act. They also call for efforts that go beyond gender differences to eliminate sexual harassment, including persons who sexually harass others, organizations which condone such acts, and any belittling acts.

Many women journalists say that even if they appealed to their colleagues, seniors, or bosses to do something about unpleasant experiences with their news sources, they were often told "Let it go," "Don't make trouble," "Don't bring shame to our company," and "You are being troublesome." No matter if it is in the company, on site, or in partner companies, they say they have been forced to endure tacit rules convenient for men, and that being patient has been seen as a criterion in the evaluation of women's job performance.

In the statement, they say that the community of journalists should clearly shows its strong commitment to uphold zero tolerance regarding sexual harassment and to fight against perpetrators. They also demand that the male-dominated media organizations should not ignore sexual harassment allegations by replacing the women who reported the sexual harassment from the news-gathering activity they are assigned to.

During the two-day session of the rally, they shared the experiences they had suffered at work such as "An interviewee touched my thighs," "I was forcibly kissed in a car," "I was coerced into dancing cheek-to-cheek," and "I tried to act as if nothing happened because I thought I had to carry out my work."

In regard to the sexual remarks Fukuda made and the subsequent response the Ministry of Finance took, some pointed out, "Because they take advantage of their privileges of being in power, they behave outrageously in violation of human rights," "Government institutions are supposed to provide anti-sexual harassment guidelines," and "The media world should band together in an effort to increase awareness of the need to prevent sexual harassment."

Past related article:
> JCP Koike demands dismissal of financial ministry's top bureaucrat over sexual harassment allegations [April 14 & 17, 2018]
> List of Past issues
  Copyright (c) Japan Press Service Co., Ltd. All right reserved