Faced with the rise in suicides this year, a first since 2009, in particular due to the coronavirus epidemic, Japan has decided to create a ministry responsible for the fight against loneliness and isolation, according to the economic newspaper Nihon Keizai Shimbun, spotted by our colleagues from International mail, this Wednesday.
According to a provisional report from the Japanese Ministry of Health, 20,919 people committed suicide in 2020, 750 more than in 2019, the newspaper explains.
An action plan presented by the summer
With the epidemic continuing and the number of unemployed rising, authorities fear that more Japanese will commit suicide. Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga therefore appointed, on February 19, Tetsushi Sakamoto, former journalist and Minister of Regional Revitalization, Minister of Solitude. His appointment is accompanied by the creation of a unit responsible for the fight against loneliness and isolation.
“Due to the health crisis, the number of people taking their own lives is on the rise. If we do nothing, it will create a social crisis of unprecedented magnitude. Let’s be human and less bureaucratic. Let us put ourselves in the place of our fellow citizens who are in great difficulty in order to reach out to them, ”declared the new minister, according to the Japanese public channel NHK.. A government action plan should be presented by the summer.