Recommendations on Special Residence Permits
November 17, 2010
Japan Federation of Bar Associations
About the Recommendations
The Japan Federation of Bar Associations adopted the Recommendations on Special Residence Permits on November 17, 2010 and submitted them to the Immigration Bureau of the Ministry of Justice on December 6, 2010.
Main Points of the Recommendations
Regarding the operation of special residence permits, the Immigration Bureau of the Ministry of Justice released the Guidelines for Special Residence Permits in October 2006. However, the Japanese Government explains that it interprets a special residence permit as a favor to be granted at the discretion of the Minister of Justice and the said Guidelines are not the criteria for decision-making. Therefore, we make recommendations, from the view point of protecting human rights, on practices and procedures for special residence permits focusing on the cases involving school children and their family members.
Special Residence Permits and International Human Rights Treaties
Decisions whether to grant special residence permits should be made in accordance with international human rights treaties, such as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Therefore, the issues listed below should be specified by laws and regulations.
- Issuance of an order of deportation to a foreign national without regular residential status should not be permitted if it is unreasonable by comparing the disadvantage of the foreign national and the advantage achieved by their deportation.
- Particularly, if the foreign national themselves or their family member is a child, deportation should not be allowed in line with the prohibition against separation of family members if the only reason to deport the foreign national is to maintain the order of immigration control by deporting any person who does not carry a proper residential status.
Proper Procedures of Special Residential Permits be Guaranteed
Decisions whether to grant special residential permits should be made in accordance with the purposes of international human rights treaties mentioned above in 2., and proper procedures should be guaranteed for foreign nationals who are seeking special residential permits.
A Screening Body on Special Residential Permits be Established
It is necessary to consider a mechanism to ensure that procedures of special residential permits are properly and immediately carried out by establishing a third-party body to screen the decision-making process.