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Japan business lobby chief supports separate surnames for spouses

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Tokura expressed bewilderment at why the issue "has been left hanging for so long" 

Bewilderment indeed!

According to Mainichi: “There is reportedly no country other than Japan that legally requires married couples to hold the same surname. The U.N.'s Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women has repeatedly called for this to be corrected. Polls by the Mainichi Shimbun and others in March 2021 found 51% in favor, far exceeding the 23% opposed.”

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Like in other countries married women should be able to decide which surname is used.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

conservative lawmakers who argued that such a change would undermine family cohesion and traditional family values.

How?

So, a panel recommended separate family names in 1996 and 61% of people now seem in favour, according the below, Yet, once again, these conservative politicians can hold up the will of the people for their own petty prejudices.

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2023/08/23/japan/society/marriage-surnames-surveys/

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Moonraker, I agree with you , How?

And this is where the Japanese press fails miserably.

If a politician says, "This will destroy family cohesion.!"

Some one from the press should ask the simple question, "That is a very interesting concept,. How would it destroy family cohesion?"

Moony is asking that question here, but the journalists are not asking!

That is the problem.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Change names or not first start promoting women in workplaces. Making Power Points day in day out is not beneficial to the organization nor the women.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I won't say it is not important

But there are so many other things to do Chief

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

A few points!

Even though the government recently said certain professionals could keep their birth name (not change surname such as doctors lawyers etc..) the powers that be have final say and in many cases used the "clause" :

If they are well known or changing will affect their professional acknowledgements.

In other words if the government decides the woman doctor doesn't have enough of a professional "reputation" they have been known to reject her keeping her surname.

For businesses and government not changing names makes fiscal sense!

Think about the cost!

Every time someone has to change their name, the company has to change everything related to that name, change email and keep the old one also to make sure things get sent to the new email, health insurance, pension, bank accounts, passport, driver's license, etc...all need to be changed and that cost in time and in directly in money.

Then add in the 35% divorce rate and the right to change back to their birth surname and we get all the same cost again with more wasted time for going to the passport office, reestablishing the koseki, etc...

It also puts an undo burden mostly on women who end up losing credit rating they built up prior to marriage and now have to restart creating a new credit history because in most cases everything is shifted to the spouse's surname and after a number of years the past birth surname information/credit rating is lost in the mix!

Not changing names would help many mostly women retain and build their business portfolio without confusion.

My wife was well established in her field, her name is a very big part of her reputation before she met me, when she contacts people her name means something, her reputation precedes her initial contact.

If she suddenly was to have to take my name then things would be like starting from scratch, (funny enough marrying a foreigner she had the right to keep her surname) .

Imagine now she calls or contacts:

"This is Yoko Tanaka from blah blah blah"

Her name and connection to blah blah blah is well known.

Alternative is:

"Hello this is Yoko Smith from blah blah blah, I used to be Yoko Tanaka......"

Thankfully she didn't have to deal with this because I am not Japanese.

But many if her friends have and were not pleased and yes it hurt them professionally.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Kazumichi

Today 06:07 pm JST

I won't say it is not important

> But there are so many other things to do Chief

Yes like cutting government waste and corporate cost!

And eliminating this waste of time and money of changing names and everything that follows would give government workers and company HR more time to work on more important things!

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Japanese marriages require a name change because there is only one family register. Japanese married to a foreigner can retain their family names. My partner did that for a couple of decades but then decided to change. Most other countries cope with the name changes.

The fact is many women want to retain their names but the family register is the problem.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

but the family register is the problem.

Then maybe it is bureaucratic intransigence and control that is behind the inertia. There's a lot of that about.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Women should be given the right to choose.

When couples divorce requires another name change.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

You can call me this or you can call me that!!!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

My wife and I were married over ten years ago and we never faced this in any form.

She kept her western name and I am Japanese and kept mine.

It was up to us and was never even brought up.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

thepersoniamnow

My wife and I were married over ten years ago and we never faced this in any form.

> She kept her western name and I am Japanese and kept mine.

> It was up to us and was never even brought up.

The outcome would have been different if both of you were Japanese.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

When a Japanese marries a foreigner in Japan, they have to chose one family name or the other. My wife chose mine initially but applied to the family court to change her name to a double-barrelled one; my family name followed by hers, a カタカナ・漢字 combo. The process took about a month and permission was granted by a judge after an interview. The judge (female) was very sympathetic and gave approval on the spot.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Women should be given the right to choose.

absolutely

2 ( +2 / -0 )

conservative lawmakers who argued that such a change would undermine family cohesion and traditional family values.

So does the current divorce laws which see one parent literally VANISH from the children's lives and is LEGALLY no more their parent. NOTHING undermines family cohesion and traditional family values more than that.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If there's a divorce, Family Cohesion is already dead, so I don't think that point is valid.

Some one from the press should ask the simple question, "That is a very interesting concept,. How would it destroy family cohesion?"

The problem is, we don't know, and that's scary. Now, don't get me wrong, there are clearly tangible advantages to changing this policy. However, it's also true that cohesion is hard to even define precisely, let alone determine exactly what develops or breaks this desirable yet not well-defined concept, and by how much.

Does wearing the same uniform, living in the same place, eating the same food and doing the same activities increase cohesion? All else being equal, I think many people would say yes. If that's so, it's hard to imagine that having the same family name won't have at least a minor positive effect on cohesion.

Also traditionally the family is an entity in its own right, and even today we still have some leftovers of this in the legal system, such as shared property between spouses, or the very ideal of parental rights, or even the de facto right of kids to use property in the house though they clearly didn't own, buy or earn them. When one says he's "Will Smith", he's almost saying I am Will of Smith company (family). From that sense you can see the logical contradiction between claiming to be one family (company), but every time she introduces herself as Jill from Buick company even though she's in the Smith Company, and whether such a person really thinks of herself as part of the company.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Even if married couples have the same surname, which is only regulated in Japan, there is no reason to change that.

If evil is the only thing in the world, bad laws like Article 9 of the Constitution must also be changed.

Having the same surname for married couples is necessary for Japan's social infrastructure, and the disadvantage of eliminating this is that it will be easier for Chinese and Koreans to infiltrate Japanese society.

It is natural that it will become difficult for the government to keep track of family registers, and not many Japanese people see any benefit in this system.

If Chinese and Koreans are not allowed to enter the country, it would be unavoidable to consider abolishing it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"Hello this is Yoko Smith from blah blah blah, I used to be Yoko Tanaka......"

no worries on this, last i checked, Kim Kardashian West, Victoria Beckham, Hillary Clinton, they still maintain their popularity even after adopting their husband's name

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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