The ruling Liberal Democratic Party has run into difficulty drafting a bill to promote understanding for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. Although the LDP’s special committee drew up an outline for the legislation in April, many objections were raised against the panel’s report.
The panel had planned to submit the bill to the regular Diet session that ended on June 1 in preparation for the July House of Councillors election . The panel’s report stipulated that the government should formulate a basic plan to increase understanding for the LGBT community. The report also included government funding to local governments for promoting such understanding .
In the reshuffle of the LDP leadership in August, Keiji Furuya, the chair of the panel, was appointed as chairman of the LDP Election Strategy Committee, and Gaku Hashimoto, the secretary general of the panel, became state minister of health, labor and welfare. Therefore, the work of drafting legislation will likely be delayed more than expected.
The four opposition parties — the Democratic Party, Japanese Communist Party, Social Democratic Party, and People’s Life Party — jointly presented a similar bill in May. (Abridged)