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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 May 23 - 29  > Online signatures collected for end to 'No Women Admitted' policy in sumo ring
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2018 May 23 - 29 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Online signatures collected for end to 'No Women Admitted' policy in sumo ring

May 24, 2018

Calling for gender equality as stipulated in Article 14 of the Constitution, 16,939 signatures were submitted on May 23 to the Cabinet Office commission on pubic interest, claiming that "Nyonin kinsei" or the "No Women Admitted" policy regarding the ring in sumo wrestling (traditional combative Japanese sport) competition is a blatant case of discrimination against women.

These signatures, collected through online petition Change. org in about a month, request that the commission stop the Japan Sumo Association, a public interest incorporated foundation, from discriminating against women and rescind the association's "pubic interest" certificate if it keeps discriminating against and even going so far as to oust women from the ring.

Initiator of this petition movement, Todoroki Yoko said, "The organization certified as a 'public interest' incorporation has designated women as outcasts. This is a clear violation of the Constitution and the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. We'd like the Cabinet commission to properly give guidance to the Sumo Association."

An official of the commission in response said that he "hopes the association will voluntarily make a self-cleaning effort" to handle the issue.

In April, an incident occurred during a Grand Sumo provincial tour in Maizuru City in Kyoto at which the city mayor passed out when he was making a welcome speech on the dohyo (sumo ring). Several women, including a nurse, soon rushed onto the "dohyo" to give him cardiac massage and they were ordered to get off the dohyo.

Past related article:
> Sumo referee orders women giving first aid to unconscious man out of ring [April 7, 2018]
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