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HOME  > Past issues  > 2015 November 25 - December 1  > JCP efforts help to boost birthrate in country town
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2015 November 25 - December 1 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

JCP efforts help to boost birthrate in country town

November 25, 2015
Nagi Town in Okayama Prefecture, southwestern Japan, has succeeded in stemming the declining birthrate as a result of joint efforts by local residents and an assemblyperson of the Japanese Communist Party.

The town, located in the Chugoku Mountains, has a population of about 6,000. At a news conference on November 24, Nagi Town Mayor Kasagi Yoshitaka said that his town’s total fertility rate increased to 2.81 in 2014, up 0.93 point from a year earlier. This figure is twice as high as the national average.

As factors in this increase, the mayor referred to the improvements in public welfare services such as providing free medical care to children aged 18 or under, helping students going to high schools outside the town with their commuting expenses, and providing day care for sick children. In response to the demand of local residents, JCP town assembly member Moritou Masanori has repeatedly urged the local government to implement these measures.

In 2012, Moritou pushed the municipality to proclaim that it will vigorously support parents raising small children and build reasonable rental housing for the younger generation. Following that, the town authorities constructed more than 80 public housing units for young working people under the catchphrase: “Let’s bring up happy children in Nagi!” Since then, the number of those moving into the town has been growing.

A 31-year-old mother, who recently moved to Nagi from another municipality, said, “Nagi is rich in nature. And it’s very helpful that there is a support center for young parents nearby. I want to have at least three children.”

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> Abe’s empty promises about ‘new three arrows’ cannot fool public [September 27, 2015]
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