KYOTO – Cooperatives at three universities in western Japan plan to stop using signs in student housing guides that indicate they will allow non-Japanese to live there.
The co-ops at Kyoto University, Doshisha University and Ritsumeikan University said the decision was made after the Anti Racism Information Center, a student association, criticized the practice as discriminatory.
Such labeling could prompt discrimination against foreign students, the co-ops said.
According to the Kyoto University cooperative, annual apartment guides have used the kanji ryu, meaning foreign student, for more than a decade to indicate that a landlord is willing to rent to non-Japanese.
Housing units without the mark are not necessarily off-limits to non-Japanese, the Kyoto co-op said, adding that further efforts must be made with local authorities to offer better accommodations to foreign students.