On April 6, the working group released its report, “Ensuring Safety and Well-being in Disaster-Struck Regions.”
The website of the working group can be accessed here: http://www.cas.go.jp/jp/seisaku/hisaitiwg/index.html
A PDF file of the full report can be accessed here: http://www.cas.go.jp/jp/seisaku/hisaitiwg/honbun.pdf
Among the measures called for by the report, we’ll introduce those listed under the category “Support for Women and Children in Disaster-Struck Regions”:
- So that we may ease fears of potential crimes against women and children and ensure their safety and well being, we will send additional police officers and patrol cars from around the country to aid the local police in disaster-struck regions.
- We will send female police officers to the disaster regions. Working together with relevant organizations, these officers will offer consultations to women and children living in evacuation centers and also lead sessions on crime prevention.
- We will strengthen emergency safety programming at schools throughout the region and, through activities such as distributing informational leaflets to parents and guardians, will work toward maintaining the emotional care of children.
- We will work toward establishing evacuation centers whose layout and environment takes the needs of women and children into account. We will also encourage women’s participation in the management of these centers.
- We will spread awareness of the availability of consultation services for women dealing with anxiety or who have suffered violence.
- Pregnant or nursing women and young infants are particularly vulnerable to physical or emotional injury following a disaster. We will establish a support system whereby they can receive specialized and long-term care.
- Similarly, we will offer consultation and support services for children living in evacuation centers, who are dealing with stress and insecurity due to the sudden upheaval in their lives. We will offer services by child welfare specialists so that children can recover from this stress and return to their daily lives.
The full implementation of these measures will have great impact on minimizing the potential for violence against women and children in the disaster areas. But until these measures are fully realized, we’ll remain vigilant to make sure the government fulfills its promises.