The question is: Is Japan LGBT friendly? The answer is “yes”. The country is among the least restrictive in the world, with almost every major business operating with no discrimination against LGBT people. Its policies on gay rights are also outdated. In 2012, the government legalized homosexual acts between consenting adults. The LGBT community has many advocates in Japan, and the Japanese government actively promotes equality and inclusion.
In recent years, Japanese society has come a long way in embracing its LGBTQ community. While there is no official legislation protecting LGBTQ people, activists have been pressuring the Diet to introduce legislation to protect their rights. The proposed law, called the Equality Act, is currently the subject of intense political negotiations between the country’s political parties. The ruling conservative Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) has announced it will push for the passage of an LGBT law during the current Diet session. This process has revealed anti-LGBT sentiments within the LDP.
The LGBT community in Japan is thriving, with numerous celebrities dedicating airtime to LGBT issues. In 2015, Sho Sakurai interviewed drag queens and was nicknamed “Cherry Shoko in the Sky.” Matsuko Deluxe, an openly transgender television personality, was named “Lady Gaga in the Sky” and was named a Dame Edna. Other advocates of the rights movement, including Haru Ono, say that Japan has come a long way.
While the laws are still largely conservative and homophobic, there are more positive developments for the LGBT community in Japan.
In April 2017, Osaka and Tokyo recognized gay couples as foster parents, while several cities have passed legislation recognizing same-sex partnerships. However, despite its many achievements, Japan is still a very conservative society. The nuclear family remains the ideal. As a result, many LGBT+ Japanese remain in the closet.
In the city of Shinjuku, the first permanent LGBTQ+ centre in the country opened in 2017. The aim of this centre is to create a safe space for all people. The establishment is an essential legacy of the 2020 summer Olympics, which were dubbed as the ‘Rainbow Olympics’. So, if you’re planning a visit to Japan, remember that there are several gay-friendly accommodations available in the city.
While Japan is not a very homophobic country, it is still a very conservative place to visit. While it is still a very homophobic society, many locals are still unaware of their sexuality. In addition, there are no public displays of affection in public. Those who do show affection in public are often hidden from view, even by their families. A few people have embraced their sexual orientation, but they are often not out in the city.