News On Japan

Japan to Introduce Legislation for 20-Year Criminal Record Checks

TOKYO, Mar 08 (News On Japan) - The government has finalized a bill to introduce a system similar to the UK's Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) to ensure that individuals working with children do not have a history of sexual offenses.

The bill allows for inquiries into criminal history for up to 20 years, and the government plans to submit it to the Diet as early as next week, aiming for its enactment.

The so-called "Japanese version of the DBS" is a response to the unending incidents of children falling victim to sexual crimes in schools and tutoring centers. After discussions with the ruling party, the bill was finalized on the 7th. It stipulates that businesses can inquire about the sexual offense history of individuals working with children for a period of 20 years following incarceration and 10 years following a fine. The bill also proposes that the inquiries should cover not only new hires but also those who are already employed.

The government has indicated that if an employee is found to have a criminal history, they may be subject to reassignment or, depending on the circumstances, dismissal. Guidelines for businesses will be developed to ensure proper implementation of the system. In light of suggestions from within the ruling party that the inquiry period for criminal history should be extended further, the bill includes a provision to consider revisions within five years after its implementation.

The government intends to approve the bill at a Cabinet meeting next week and submit it to the Diet, aiming for passage within the current session.

Source: NHK

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