The Japanese newspaper The Mainichi reports that the erotic industry will not be eligible for government aid. Clubs and bars are also apparently to be left completely unprotected from the effects of the corona crisis. Millions of people are facing ruin in Japan.
In Japan, the government currently systematically excludes sex workers and adult companies from aid measures designed to alleviate the consequences of the economic loss caused by the measures to combat the spread of the coronavirus. A hard blow that is tantamount to destroying their existence.
Japanese relief program has no love for the nightlife
The Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare consider the entire industry, as well as nightclubs and bars, to be »unworthy« of public funds. The closure of schools and restrictions on going out, however, also create insoluble problems in Japan. Childcare, lost revenues, ongoing costs. Without government funding, most of those affected will face economic ruin.
As in other countries, the government has decided on an impressive relief program. Companies receive just over 8000 yen per day for every employee who cannot come to work due to a lack of childcare. The self-employed receive a little over 4000 yen per day. Excluded from this measure are not only representatives of the erotic industry, but also restaurant owners and members of the entertainment industry in general.
No public funds for the erotic industry
In an interview with Mainichi Japan, a representative of the ministry said: »Not just with this particular assistance program, but with all subsidy programs regarding employment, people in these types of occupations are ineligible. We determined that it would be inappropriate to use public funds to subsidize even business operators who have obtained legal permission under the Act on Control and Improvement of Amusement Business, etc.«
Apparently, the ministry under the leadership of Katsunobu Kato fears that aid could be given to businesses that are linked to organized crime. However, the complete refusal of aid is likely to destroy countless livelihoods and cause people to slide into poverty and maybe crime. Numerous lobby groups for the rights of sex workers therefore strongly criticize the discriminatory approach.
Dire consequences for adult entertainment and sex workers
A representative of the Cabakura trade union, which represents the interests of the adult industry in Japan, says: »Particularly in the service industry and among nighttime occupations, the slump in business will become even harsher. Without any compensation or benefits, all we can do is to wait for our lives to collapse.«
Despite these stark and drastic words, the ministry is reluctant to reconsider and Secretary Kato has refused to budge on this decision. If this remains to be the case, sex workers and the erotic industry in Japan will face a major disaster.