Happy Pride Month, Japan!
Happy Pride Month! Every June, many countries around the world celebrate Pride Month to honor and bring to attention the contributions of the LGBTQIA+ community throughout history and the present day, as well as raise awareness for issues the community currently faces. This month, let’s take a look at some important organizations that are working to educate about, provide support, and uplift the LGBTQIA+ community in Japan!
Stonewall Japan, named after the Stonewall Riots that occurred in New York in June 1969 (and the reason why pride is celebrated in June), was started in 1988 by JET program participants as a way for the LGBTQIA+ community in Japan to communicate and connect. Now, Stonewall Japan has branches all throughout the country and facilitates online resources, holds events, and continues to generally serve as a networking safe space for the community.
ReBit is an organization that provides classes and training to schools, companies, local governments, and universities in Japan, aiming to educate and provide information about the LGBTQIA+ community. Their goal is to help students and teachers “experience and realize diversity from the perspective of LGBTQIA+.”
The Japan Alliance for LGBT Legislation, or J-ALL, focuses on the importance of legal issues. Through proposing policies and lobbying for legislation, providing research, publications, and consultations, as well as working in public relations and education, J-ALL’s mission is “to legislate laws in Japan to remove social barriers based on sexual orientation and gender identity.”
Last but not least, JobRainbow is a job recruitment website that connects LGBTQIA+-friendly companies in Japan with potential job candidates. In addition to LGBTQIA+ friendliness, companies are also ranked on gender equality, disability friendliness, multiculturalism, and childcare support, giving each company an overall “diversity score” for candidates to consider when applying. By providing a place for qualified candidates to find jobs within companies that value sustainability and diversity, JobRainbow helps to fill a gap where people of diverse identities may find traditional Japanese job-hunting difficult.
There are many more local and regional organizations within Japan that provide resources and support their individual communities. These are just a few examples of the important work that LGBTQIA+ organizations within Japan are doing. Make sure to check out these cool organizations, and once again, happy Pride Month!