YWCA of Japan statement: In Solidarity with #BlackLivesMattter, Calling for the Elimination of Racism
The YWCA of Japan, as a part of the global YWCA movement, stands in solidarity with the YWCAs around the world including YWCA USA and the World YWCA after the murder of George Floyd by the Minneapolis police. Together, we call for a just investigation and that those accountable be brought to justice. We stand in solidarity with #Blacklivesmatter and call for the elimination of structural racism from our society.
Japanese society has perpetuated and strengthened its own racism. This society continues to ignore the human rights of people who have fallen through the gaps and to clearly oppress and violate the human rights of minorities, under the false perception that we are a “homogenous nation.”, with a value system with its core in the Emperor system which labels people as “noble” or “lowly”, “superior” or “inferior.”
The YWCA of Japan upholds the vision of a society where “people of different generation, cultures and backgrounds are respected and valued”. As declared in the 2009 “Apology for the Asia-Pacific War and the Resolution for Commitment to World Peace”, it has been our great repentance that we were not only unable to stop the Japanese aggression but also were obliged to collaborate in the war. Upon this regret, we have raised our voices for peace, and continued programs such as the “Japan-Korea Youth Conference”, “Nanjing Peace Pilgrimage” and
“Pilgrimage to Hiroshima”, valuing the communication and networks with YWCAs in the Asia Pacific region and creating spaces for learning and action. Local YWCAs throughout Japan are also dedicating efforts to promote multicultural coexistence in many different ways.
We are committed and hereby declare to continue combating racism and taking action for a world where all people are respected, together with our YWCA sisters and friends around the world.
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