- United States
The Japanese government, with a view to decrease illegal immigrants in the country, has started implementing the new immigration policy which will essentially eliminate the ‘existence’ of illegal immigrants in Japan.
Immigration rules will be made flexible for foreigners intending to stay longer in Japan. They will also be issued resident cards for their stay.
The main focus is on the fact that how will this change affect the illegal immigrants. Due to the implementation of this policy, those immigrants who did not get registered with the immigration authorities will be deprived of most basic social facilities. These might include public school services for their children and medical care.
Local governments that provide such services are also confused regarding the outcome of this policy. Their views and comments differ in fact on this issue.
People are also criticizing this policy and think that such policies would have an adverse effect on the society as a whole. They say that such systems will totally disconnect the illegal immigrants from the Japanese society and will isolate their worlds. Those who cannot return to their homes will be left with no other choice but to stay in Japan and suffer from such policy.
The old system had the two departments of immigration and municipality working together to regulate the society. The immigration bureau of Japan was responsible to regulate the information about the entry and exit of immigrants in Japan and their legally allowed period of stay. The Municipal governments in Japan had the job of keeping the records of the people in the society like their addresses and issued the household members of the foreigners and issued them with alien registration cards, regardless of their legal status.
The new system that is being implemented had been issued 3 years ago but the government had decided to give people time to adjust with its changes. In this system resident cards are to be issued to all those immigrants intending on staying in Japan for more than 3 months. They will be issued to them on certain designated airports. Those arriving on airports other than those will have to go to the local Municipal government office to obtain their cards.
These new cards that are issued have been made with sophistication. They have integrated chips in them for the computer to recognize respectively the owners and their cards. They also contain all necessary information of the holder and their pictures to ensure that there isn’t any forgery. The ones having old registration cards must have them exchanged for the new resident cards before the expiry of their authorized term or three years.
The immigrants will be registered in the basic resident register like Japanese citizens after receiving such cards. Maximum limit of residence stay is increased from 3 years to 5 years in the new system. If the foreigners leave Japan during their stay here and return before the end of one year, they will not require a re-entry permit.
Although this new system shows benefits for those who have legal status in Japan, those with illegal status are left to wither. About 67,000 illegal immigrants are facing much confusion at the hand of this new system. They say that they are neither sure of the extent of its impact on them nor being properly guided by the relevant authorities.
This confusion stands because under the old system these illegal aliens had the availability of all basic facilities, which they are now deprived of due to the arrival of this new policy. Officials of the central government clarified that administrative service will be offered to the illegal aliens as before. But if they fail to get themselves registered they would definitely be deprived of the other social services.
But the Municipal governments have their faces in all the opposite directions to each other. It is difficult to get a single certain response from them as some would answer in the affirmative to any one query and the others would beg to differ from it. This dilemma created by the new policy, in the illegal immigrants and the municipal government officials, is contributing a lot to the unfavorable responses it is getting.
Tags: Illegal migrants, Immigration, Japan, Japan immigration