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2014 May 7 - 13 [WELFARE]

JCP efforts bring about construction of more nurseries on vacant national land

May 9, 2014
The Finance Ministry on May 8 announced that unused national land, such as former sites of government employees’ housing units, will be used to construct 51 childcare centers across Japan. This came about due to efforts jointly made by the Japanese Communist Party and civil movements.

Together with citizens seeking construction of more authorized childcare facilities, the JCP has been urging the national government to utilize unused national properties for that purpose. The party has also taken up the issue repeatedly in the Diet.

In August 2013, in response to an inquiry from JCP Upper House member Tamura Tomoko, a ministry official stated that it will offer vacant national land to local governments if they make a request.

After the JCP inquiry, the Finance Ministry suggested that municipal governments and social welfare corporations which plan to build childcare facilities can purchase or sign a fixed-term lease contract for unused national land. The government already made an agreement on 14 vacant state-owned lots. Another 20 lots will be sold and leased in the near future. Sales and lease contracts on 17 lots are now under negotiation.

Commenting on the ministry’s announcement, Tamura said that the joint efforts of the JCP and civil movements blossomed into reaching this achievement, but the existing system for purchase and lease of national land imposes heavy financial burdens on local governments. In order to drastically decrease the number of children on waiting lists for authorized childcare centers, the JCP will work hard to achieve state subsidies for local government’s land purchases and make vacant national land available for free of charge, she added.

Past related articles:
> Make use of Tokyo public land for more childcare centers: JCP [March 14, 2013]
> JCP Tokyo assemblyperson demands more certified childcare centers [February 27, 2013]
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