National

Japanese lawmakers agree on payments to kin of former leprosy patients

JIJI

A nonpartisan group of lawmakers reached a broad agreement on Wednesday to offer family members of former leprosy patients up to ¥1.8 million in compensation per person.

The agreement came after a district court in June ordered the state to pay between ¥300,000 and ¥1.3 million per person to 541 of the 561 plaintiffs, to compensate for the discrimination suffered by relatives of former leprosy patients.

The lawmakers agreed that the relief measure will cover all plaintiffs, including the 20 people judged by the court to be ineligible for the compensation. The plaintiffs who died after filing the lawsuit will also be covered by the payments.

The group of lawmakers plans to submit a relevant bill to the ongoing extraordinary session of the Diet.

The preamble of the legislation will ask the Diet and the government to clarify where the responsibility lies for the discrimination.

The court ruling was finalized after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in July declined to issue an appeal.

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