Japan approves cash handout for struggling students amid pandemic
Japan Times -- May 20
The Cabinet approved Tuesday a program to provide up to ¥200,000 ($1,900) in a cash handout to each of around 430,000 university and other students in the nation struggling financially to pay for tuition or living costs amid the spread of the new coronavirus.

The support measure comes as the pandemic has led to business closures in many regions, and forced students to suspend or cut back on their part-time jobs. Students from overseas are also eligible for the program.

Students from low-income households exempt from residence tax will receive ¥200,000 each, and others ¥100,000.

The government has set aside ¥53 billion from reserves under its first supplementary budget for fiscal 2020 to finance the program. Eligible for the program are graduate and undergraduate students at universities, students at junior, technical and vocational colleges and foreign students studying at Japanese language schools.

“It’s most important for students not to abandon continuing and advancing their education. We’d like to quickly provide assistance to all,” education minister Koichi Hagiuda told reporters.

政府は19日朝の持ち回り閣議で、新型コロナウイルスの影響で経済的に困窮する大学生などに最大20万円を支給する支援策を決定しました。  萩生田文科大臣:「学生の学びの継続のための緊急給付金を創設することとしました」  政府は今年度予算の予備費を活用し、アルバイト収入の減少などによって学業を続けることが困難になった学生に一人あたり10万円を給付します。特に困窮している学生には給付額を20万円とします。給付の対象は大学生のほか、大学院生や専門学校生、日本語学校で学ぶ外国人留学生などで約40万人が見込まれています。また、政府は第2次補正予算案を来週に閣議決定し、来月17日の国会会期末までの成立を目指す方針です。
News sources: Japan Times, ANNnewsCH
Jul 09
About a third of parents in Japan postponed vaccinating their children during the coronavirus pandemic amid fears of catching an infection, a survey by a nonprofit organization showed Monday. (Japan Today)
Jul 08
In a move that will affect Japanese studying in the U.S., the government there said Monday that international students attending American universities will have to depart the country or transition to another college if their classes are moved entirely online for the fall semester amid the coronavirus pandemic. (Japan Times)
Jul 05
Major Japanese wireless carriers recently launched a service to provide foreign tourists with disaster relief information via mobile phone short message service in the event of an earthquake or typhoon. (Kyodo)
Jul 04
Single mothers and women with less secure jobs in Japan have seen their employment opportunities upended as the coronavirus pandemic continues to rage. (Japan Today)
Jul 03
More than 3,400 elementary and junior high school students and teachers have contracted food poisoning at 15 schools near Tokyo due to school lunches, local authorities said Thursday. (Kyodo)
Jul 02
The Japanese government compiled Wednesday a package of policy measures to promote women's empowerment, including a possible law revision to address cases of unpaid child support payments after divorce. (Japan Times)
Jul 02
A day after China passed and enacted a new national security law to govern Hong Kong, Japanese lawmakers kicked off official discussions over ways to welcome financial talent that may be contemplating leaving the international financial hub. (Nikkei)
Jul 02
Immigration authorities have resumed processing of visa applications, in a move expected to speed up entry clearance for foreign nationals with applications stuck in pending. (Japan Times)
Jun 30
Two universities in Osaka Prefecture evacuated their campuses on Monday after a bomb threat was made criticizing the English name of their planned new merged school, the operator of the schools said. (Kyodo)
Jun 28
Japan has produced its first ninja studies graduate after Genichi Mitsuhashi spent two years honing his martial arts skills and absorbing the finer traditions of the feudal martial arts agents. (Japan Times)