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HOME  > Past issues  > 2019 October 30 - November 5  > Shinfujin in convention calls for gender equality and a new government
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2019 October 30 - November 5 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Shinfujin in convention calls for gender equality and a new government

November 3 & 4, 2019

The New Japan Women's Association (Shinfujin or NJWA) on November 2 and November 3 held its national convention in Tokyo, sharing a commitment to increase Shinfujin membership looking toward its 60th founding anniversary in 2021, and reaffirmed that a Shinfujin advance is indispensable in realizing gender equality and women's demands.

The Shinfujin convention elected Yoneyama Atsuko the new Shinfujin chairperson and adopted a resolution calling for the protection of the pacifist Constitution and for an end to the Abe government as well as a special proposal calling for cuts in the consumption tax rate to 5%.

Shinfujin Chair Kasai Kimiyo in her opening speech delivered on the first day pointed out that constitutionalism was destroyed and the consumption tax rate was increased twice in the seven years under the Abe regime. She criticized the Prime Minister's Office for covering up sexual harassment by a top bureaucrat and sexual assault by a journalist who was said to be close to PM Abe, stressing the need to replace the Abe regime with a coalition government consisting of opposition parties.

In discussion sessions, a delegate from Chiba Prefecture reported on the current situation in her community stricken by three big typhoons over a short period of time, and said that global warming has caused these disasters. Calling for a sustainable world, she said, "Now is not the time to spend a huge amount of money on Japan's rearmament."

Japanese Communist Party Secretariat Head Koike Akira in his remarks as a guest speaker expressed his respect for Shinfujin's relief activities in typhoon/downpour-hit areas and called on the audience to work together with the JCP to initiate meaningful measures to tackle disasters and climate change.

Regarding the evolving joint struggle of opposition parties, Koike said, "Our struggles are strongly supported by people power and grassroots movements. Your presence and the role you have been playing throughout the country are of great importance."

Koike announced that the JCP is setting up a project named "JCP With You for Individual Dignity and Gender Equality" and has made policy proposals to achieve a gender equal society.

Koike cited Shinfujin's efforts in informing the world of the wartime Japanese military "comfort women" issue and fighting to eradicate sexism at work, at home, and in everyday life, and added, "Since its establishment, Shinfujin has been playing a pioneering role in defending women's human rights."

Koike pointed out that Japan is still "developing country" in terms of gender equality due to Japanese business circles' profit-first management policy and the present government influenced by the so-called "Yasukuni faction" politicians who beautify and grolify the prewar state system which regarded men as superior to women and required each individual to obey the state. He concluded his remarks by expressing his hope that Shinfujin will play its part in helping to create a coalition government of opposition parties and achieving a gender equal society.

Past related articles:
> Japanese and South Korean women's groups issue joint statement for peace [October 25, 2019]
> International Women’s Day events in Japan focus on promotion of gender equality [March 9, 2019]
> Shinfujin denounces weekly magazine’s article for insulting women [January, 11, 2019]
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