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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 May 23 - 29  > Komae City mayor resigns amid growing public criticism over sexual harassment allegations
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2018 May 23 - 29 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Komae City mayor resigns amid growing public criticism over sexual harassment allegations

May 23 and 24, 2018

The mayor of Tokyo’s Komae City on May 23 announced his resignation amid public criticism over his sexual harassment allegations. The Japanese Communist Party city assembly members’ group, which has tackled the issue, said that the mayor should admit to his acts and apologize to the victims.

The JCP in March, based on documents obtained through the information disclosure system, revealed at a city assembly meeting that Mayor Takahashi Kunihiko sexually harassed female city employees. In collaboration with female city assembly members of other political parties and concerned citizens, the JCP has called for a thorough investigation into the matter and demands the mayor’s resignation.

The mayor refuses to admit that he committed sexual harassment. Last week, the vice mayor announced the city’s investigation results which acknowledged the mayor’s guilt and advised the mayor to step down. However, the mayor rejected the advice.

This week, four female city government workers submitted to the mayor a written protest, criticizing his inappropriate conduct with them. The document states that the mayor, for example, patted one of them on the buttocks during a party. It also points out that in addition to the four, there are more victims.

Mayor Takahashi on May 23 held a press conference and said that in order to stop causing further chaos in the city administration, he will leave the office within two weeks. However, he insisted that concerning what kinds of acts should be categorized as sexual harassment, a gap exists between him and the female workers. He also asserted that he does not think that he did anything that falls into that category.

Past related articles:
> One in three young medical workers suffer some form of harassment: union survey [May 12, 2018]
> Unionized female reporters issue joint statement condemning sexual harassment [April 22 & 24, 2018]
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