Without Dreams: Children in Alternative Care in Japan.
International Resource Technical Report
iii, 119 p.
Published: June 2014
Human Rights Watch
350 Fifth Ave., 34th Floor
New York, NY 10118-3299
More than 39,000 children in Japan live in alternative care settings because authorities determined that their parents wereeither unable or unwilling to care for them properly. However, the alternative care system is heavily dependent on placementsin group institutions, with only a fraction of the children entering foster care, and even a smaller number being adopted. Japanis setting up some of its most vulnerable children to fail: many of these children are not taught necessary life-skills and are notgiven the continuing support they need to live independent, productive lives in Japanese society.
Without Dreams examines Japan's alternative care system for children. It analyzes the system's organization and processes,highlights problems found in the institutionalization of most children (including infants), and documents abuses that takeplace. It also considers the difficulties many children experience when they leave alternative care, and outlines continuingproblems with foster care. Finally, it examines the experience of orphans of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami.
The report draws on more than 200 interviews, including with children and adults who previously lived in alternative caresettings, foster parents, administrators of group institutions, child care workers, government officials, and experts specializingin child care issues. (Author abstract)
Japan; foster care; foster children; child placement; group homes; residential care institutions