Lawyers to support bullying victims

Kyodo

A nationwide group of lawyers with expertise in school bullying will be established this year to better support victims, a source said Sunday.

Yoshikuni Noguchi, a lawyer in Hyogo Prefecture, said he and other lawyers will hold a preparatory meeting in Nagoya later this week to set the basic policies of the group, with the aim of launching an organization with up to 80 members across Japan in November.

Members of the group will gather several times a year to share information and experience regarding dealing with schools and education boards over bullying. The secretariat of the body will be based in Tokyo, Noguchi said.

Lawyers joining the organization will be required to uphold children’s rights and provide moral support to victims of bullying and their families. They will also need to be recommended by veteran lawyers who are already members of the group, he said.

After it is launched, a list of member lawyers will be released online to facilitate access to legal support for victims of bullying.

If necessary, members will demand schools and education boards probe cases of bullying through means such as surveys covering all students. They may also sue schools and local government entities who try to conceal cases of abuse, he said.

  • Ron NJ

    “Up to 80 lawyers across the country” really means more than half of the lawyers will be in Tokyo, and a quarter to half of the prefectures will wind up with zero members, making the entire thing pretty useless. Anyone want to take bets against me?