Japan: Calls grow to include LGBT couples in national census

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10/16/2020

Advocacy groups and members of the LGBT community are calling on the central government to count the number of LGBT couples in the national census so they can be accurately reflected in government policies. Same-sex marriages are currently not legally recognized in Japan, but there are growing calls for the government to review its census data-collection methods for capturing the number of spouses, as more people publicly embrace sexual diversity. Hisana Mamada, 29, who heads “Hareruwa,” a support group for sexual minorities in Gunma Prefecture, is a transgender man, but he is registered as a woman in the family registration system. When filling out a questionnaire for the census, he chose “Female” in the sex category. He entered the name of his female partner who lives with him as a member of his household and selected “Spouse of householder” as her relationship to him, the householder. “I wanted (people) to know that it’s not uncommon for couples to have the same registered sex,” Mamada said.

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