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HOME  > Past issues  > 2022 April 20 - 26  > Shii at Rainbow Pride festival expresses his determination to work hard to enact LGBTQ equality law
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2022 April 20 - 26 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Shii at Rainbow Pride festival expresses his determination to work hard to enact LGBTQ equality law

April 25, 2022

Calling for creating a society where sexual minorities, including LGBTQ people, can positively live as themselves, the Tokyo Rainbow Pride 2022 took place on April 22-24 in Tokyo’s Yoyogi Park under the COVID-19-related restrictions set by the Tokyo government which limited the number of in-person participants.

During the three-day event, various programs such as free live music were offered at the amphitheater area in the park. In addition, solidarity speeches were delivered by officials from foreign embassies in Tokyo and political party representatives, including Japanese Communist Party Chair Shii Kazuo.

Wearing a rainbow scarf, Shii appeared on the open-air stage. Shii said that social change has transpired in regard to the issue of same-sex marriage. As an example, Shii referred to the Sapporo District Court ruling a year ago which recognized that the ban on same-sex marriage violates the Constitution stipulating equality before the law as well as to the fact that over half of Japan’s population now live in municipalities having the same-sex partnership system.

Stating, “I believe a society with respect for LGBTQ people is a society in which everyone can live their lives with dignity,” Shii expressed his determination to work hard to enact an LGBTQ equality law and realize a revision of the Civil Code so that same-sex couples can get married.

After the three-day Rainbow Pride festival, about 2,000 people paraded through Tokyo’s major shopping areas of Shibuya and Harajuku, appealing to passersby to support their call for legalization of same-sex marriage.

Kawai Jun, who is in his 30s and works as a childcare worker in Tokyo, said, “Since I came out as transgender two years ago, my co-workers and children’s guardians have shown their understanding and acceptance of sexual diversity. I really appreciate this.”

Past related articles:
> If Tokyo endorses, more than half the population will be under municipalities certifying same-sex 'partnerships' [July 1, 2021]
> Sapporo district court recognizes ban on same-sex marriage as unconstitutional [March 18, 2021]

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