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Nearly 30 pct in Japan back selective dual surname system, Cabinet Office poll

  • March 25, 2022
  • , Jiji Press , 8:56 p.m.
  • English Press

Tokyo, March 25 (Jiji Press)–Nearly 30 pct of people in Japan is positive about a selective dual surname system for married couples, a survey by the Cabinet Office showed Friday.


In the survey, 28.9 pct of all respondents said it is better to introduce a system that allows married couples to choose to use separate surnames.


Meanwhile, 27.0 pct preferred the continuation of the current system requiring married couples to use a single surname.


The largest group of respondents, 42.2 pct, said that the government should develop a new legal system for the use of maiden names while maintaining the single surname system.


The mail survey covered 5,000 people aged 18 or older across the country in December and January. Valid answers were given by 57.7 pct of them.


In the previous survey, held in 2017, the proportion of respondents positive about a selective dual surname system stood at 42.5 pct.


According to an official in charge of the survey, the 2017 result cannot be compared simply with the latest result as there were changes in the survey methods.


In the latest survey, the support rate by gender for a dual surname system came to 25.3 pct for men and 32.1 pct for women.


By age group, the support rate was around 40 pct for those in their 40s and younger groups, while standing at 25.7 pct for those in their 60s and 15.1 pct for those aged 70 or older.


On the surnames of siblings, 63.5 pct said they should have the same surname, while 13.8 pct did not care if they have different surnames.


In 1996, the Justice Ministry’s Legislative Council drafted an outline of Civil Code revisions to allow a selective dual surname system to be introduced. The system has yet to be realized, however. 

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