The Osaka Municipal Government was preparing Thursday to take disciplinary action against civil servants who refused to answer a survey on whether they have tattoos, as concern in and out of the city was growing that the questionnaire constituted a human rights violation.

Mayor Toru Hashimoto, who ordered the survey, has already threatened to deny promotions to any of the 33,500 municipal employees who refused to answer it. So far, 110 employees, including over 70 in the environmental department who work as garbage collectors, have admitted to having tattoos.

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