Alarm bells sound over 'outings' in Japan's LGBT community
Kyodo -- Apr 13
People having their sexual orientation or gender identity revealed without their consent has become a deepening problem in Japan, a country known for its culture in which the "nail that sticks out gets hammered down."

In recent years, there has a been a growing number of cases in which a person has been publically "outed" by someone they trust, sometimes resulting in the affected person feeling they have to quit school or work to escape the fallout.

In the most tragic cases, public outings have driven victims to fall ill, including causing them to suffer mental health issues or even to take their own lives. Experts argue that such malicious or careless intrusions into someone's personal life should be considered discriminatory and possible grounds for criminal charges.

Over the course of six years from March 2012, one private support center said it received 110 calls to its 24-hour hotline service from people aggrieved about being outed.

But, because the hotline did not categorize callers as having suffered an outing in fiscal 2011, fiscal 2013 and fiscal 2014, and due to the heavy volume of calls that went unanswered, the total is believed to be up to 24 times higher than the 110 documented cases, the Shakaiteki Hosetsu Support Center said.

Indeed, experts point out this is a perfect demonstration of the damage being done to members of the LGBT community.

According to the center, there were 31 calls by people wanting to talk about being outed in fiscal 2012, 42 in fiscal 2015, 19 in fiscal 2016 and 18 in fiscal 2017.

News source: Kyodo
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