Japan’s Social Democratic Party leader, Mizuho Fukushima, will march with LGBT people and their supporters on 11th August in the Tokyo Pride Parade calling for equality and rights.

The event, “Let’s go march with Mizuho Hukushima!” will allow gay Japanese people the chance to talk with the left-leaning politician over lunch and then march with her.

The SDP were the main opposition party in Japan in the 1990s, but lost support to the Democratic Party of Japan in recent years.

Of the 242 seats in the Upper House, the SDP held 3 seats before last month’s general election.

The Party has a minority-friendly policy that includes sexual minorities. However, it retained only 2 seats.

Japan’s first ever out gay candidate failed to win a seat at the election. Kanako Otsuji, 32, was a candidate for the Democratic Party of Japan.

Ms Fukushima said: “Life in Japan today isn’t easy, so let’s make society a better place by marching together and putting our energy together!”

Other SDP local assembly members also plan to march with her.

Daiga Ishikawa, a coordinator of the event and executive director of Peer Friends, an event for gay youth, has previous experiences working with the Party leader.

“Walking with many friends in the Parade encourages not just LGBT people but also our supporters on the streets. We hope to enjoy this wonderful event with other marchers,” said Ishikawa.

The event organisers are excited by this a rare chance to talk directly with Ms Fukushima over lunch and hope many people will walk with them.

The “Let’s go march with Mizuho Hukushima!” event costs 1,000 yen (£4.15) and is limited to 30 people on a first-come-first served basis.

Detailed information on the event can be checked at this website.

The website is in Japanese only.

Azusa Yamashita

GayJapanNews