Japan's high child poverty rate driven by an increasing number of single-parent families
ABC -- Mar 02
Japan is one of the world's richest countries but one in six Japanese children now live in poverty - one of the worst rates in the industrialised world.

Poverty is largely hidden in Japan as most go without help for it is seen as a great shame, but the issue is now threatening the country's economic revival.

Nana Kojima is a single mother bringing up two children and is part of Japan's hidden but growing army of working poor.

"I struggle with the rent. Half my income goes on that and then I don't have much left for food and bills," Ms Kojima said.

In Japan more than half a million single mothers live below the poverty line, earning less than $12,000 a year.

Japan's male corporate culture means single mothers mostly work in casual, low-paid jobs.

Ms Kojima works as a waitress for $10 an hour.

"In Japan, single, working mothers are discriminated against," she said.

"We have little chance to progress as our needs are not understood."

The increase in the number of single mothers is fuelling Japan's record child poverty rates.

Community groups are starting to provide help, including volunteers dedicated to making sure children in need get a healthy meal and their mothers have a chance to connect.

The Children's Network group in Tokyo was one of the first to be set up in the Japanese capital just two years ago and it has encouraged more to be established.

News source: ABC
Apr 29
About 60 pct of teachers at public junior high schools in Japan worked at least 60 hours per week in fiscal 2016, beyond the dividing line used by the state for determining death from overwork, an education ministry survey revealed Friday. (Jiji)
Apr 26
Schoolyard bullying has long bedeviled Japan where some students have taken their own lives after being harassed in person or online through emails, text messages and blogs. (Japan Today)
Apr 26
The Tokyo High Court on Wednesday rejected an appeal by three former school teachers who claimed it was unreasonable they were banned from working part time after retirement because they had in the past refused to stand and sing the national anthem. (Japan Times)
Apr 25
Princess Kako, a granddaughter of Emperor Akihito, will study at the University of Leeds in Britain from September this year to June next year as an exchange student, the Imperial Household Agency said Monday. (Japan Today)
Apr 24
In Aichi Prefecture, the nation's top producing region of jump ropes, efforts are being made to promote the sport at home and abroad. (Japan Times)
Apr 21
Japan again saw a record number of minors falling victim to crimes such as molestation through the use of social media last year, with many of those affected having had unrestricted Internet access, police data released Thursday showed. (Japan Today)
Apr 21
A survey has found that the proportion of children in Japan who dislike studying surges after they enter junior high schools, reaching some 60 pct in their second year. (Jiji)
Apr 20
Japanese 15-year-olds may top their international peers in science and math, but when it comes to a sense of satisfaction with their lives, they rank near the bottom, according to a first-ever global assessment of student well-being released Wednesday by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. (Japan Times)
Apr 16
The government has decided to tolerate the use of Adolf Hitler's autobiography "Mein Kampf" ("My Struggle") as teaching material in schools. (Japan Times)
Apr 16
The man arrested over the death of a 9-year-old Vietnamese girl in Chiba Prefecture had been seen talking to the victim while he was on patrol duty near her school, investigative sources said Saturday. (Japan Times)