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Solidarity Network with Migrants Japan

Who We Are – the Solidarity Network with Migrants Japan (SMJ)

SMJ is an NGO advocating for the rights and dignity of migrants and people with multi-cultural backgrounds living in Japan. We aim to create a society in which everyone can feel secure in being their unique selves, a society in which diversity is recognized as a strength. Towards this purpose, SMJ builds partnerships with organizations and individuals sharing our mission across Japan and through this network organizes and coordinates a wide variety of programs. We also foster alliances with overseas NGOs to promote the rights of migrants from a transnational perspective.

Our Mission

SMJ’s mission is to realize a society that ensures the rights and dignity of migrants and people with multicultural backgrounds, where all people can feel safe in living as they are. We support and empower such individuals, whilst condemning discrimination based on race, ethnicity or upon any other terms, and contributing to creating a fair and just society based upon international human rights standards.

What We Do

Advocacy

To ensure the rights and dignity of migrants and people with multi-cultural backgrounds, SMJ lobbies for the reform of policies and systems at a national level of politics, in alliance with organizations and individuals sharing our mission across Japan,

Networking

SMJ carries out different projects pertaining to Technical Intern Trainee and labor issues, medical and welfare issues, women’s rights, hate speech and discrimination, the Immigration Control Act, and international human rights. We actively exchange information with NGOs in Japan and overseas, as well as organizing various workshops, seminars, and events to create networks in support of migrants.

Publicity

SMJ publicly transmits the voices and lives of migrants and people with multi-cultural backgrounds living in Japanese society through campaigns, web media, the periodical “M-net,” and other publications. In this way we contribute to the recognition of the diversity brought by such individuals as members of civil society.

Who “Migrants” Are

SMJ refers to “migrants” as people who have crossed borders (i.e. international migrants). While the term is not yet popular in Japan, “migrants” are “people who changed their habitual place of residence, regardless of their legal status and the cause for their move” according to definitions by the UN and international agencies. In general, movement that lasts between 3 to 12 months is called “short-term / temporary migration,” while migration for longer than a year is classified as “long-term / permanent migration.” (For more, refer to the following links: http://www.iom.int/key-migration-terms)

http://www.unic.or.jp/news_press/features_backgrounders/22174/
http://www.iomjapan.org/information/migrant_definition.html
http://www.iom.int/key-migration-terms

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