Human Rights Now Visits Temporary Housing Area for Earthquake Victims
Kazuko Ito, Secretary General of Human Rights Now, visited Great East Japan Earthquake victims living in temporary housing areas, along with Kazuko Koori (Ministry of Internal Affairs officer), Tomiko Okada (Democratic Party of Japan Vice President), and Azuma Konno (Democratic Party of Japan) on June 16th, 2012.
The three representatives, expressed deep concern about the rights of the earthquake and tsunami victims after the release of research by Human Rights Now earlier this year. They observed the temporary housing facilities in critical areas including those located in Kesennuma in Miyagi prefecture. The group visited housing constructed on unstable ground, and talked with victims who are impelled to live in poor living conditions – often in a house with no insulation- receiving no assistance from the local and national government, in order to extend their understanding of the current challenges disaster-affected areas are facing in the aftermath of the events in 2011.
“I heard a rumor that the city government is not going to provide us with financial assistance. We’re running out of money. How are we supposed to support ourselves?” Said one victim showing frustration with the lack of information and clear vision reagrding uncertainties about their future.
This visit revealed that the assistance scheme adapted by the national government is not being strictly followed by local governmental bodies, threatening the victims’ basic human rights which are granted by the Constitution under Article 25. HRN will continue our work to ensure that the national government will provide adequate care to the disaster victims and ensure their access to healthy living conditions.