Recently Japanese government has appointed the first ever Minister for Loneliness amid the increasing suicide rates in Japan.

  • The Suicide rates has increased for the first time in 11 years in the current coronavirus situation.
  • Prior to Japan, the United Kingdom which became the first country in world to create a similar position in the year 2018.
  • Tetsushi Sakamoto, who is in charge of combating Japan’s falling birth rate and revitalising regional economies, was also appointed as the Loneliness minister.
  • Government of the Japan has also created an “isolation or loneliness countermeasures office on 19th February 2021 within its cabinet.
  • This office will look after the issues like suicide and child poverty which have increased amid the ongoing pandemic.

Suicide rate in Japan

  • Suicide is considered a major social issue in Japan. By 2017, Japan had witnessed 17th highest suicide rate in the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development).
  • The suicide rates had increased by 34.7 per cent during the 1997 Asian financial crisis. The rates were at peak in the year 2003 after that, the rates have been decreasing.
  • The rates were at its lowest in 2019. However, the monthly suicide rates in Japan increased by 16 per cent in between July and October 2020 because of coronavirus.
  • Among the total cases, 70% of suicides are male. Suicide has become the leading cause of death for man in the age group of 2 years to 44 years.

About Tetsushi Sakamoto

Tetsushi Sakamoto is a Japanese politician who was appointed as the Minister of Loneliness on 12th February 2021. Sakamoto is also a member of the House of Representatives in national legislature of Japan called Diet. Sakamoto represents the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) of Japan.

Japan Appoints Loneliness Minister to Check Rising Suicide Rate Japan Appoints Loneliness Minister to Check Rising Suicide Rate