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Same-sex couples in Kum[email protected]+cm-yK8GN-iZ&e7zBSfp-Dl#[email protected]amoto City will be able to move into public housing using the prefecture’s partnership certificates for LGBT people, local media has reported.

In April, Kumamoto joined a number of locafUm*UVftl6*li)HP*SQUjDuR03+4fsP(47O+ED%gwv*ee$T3L-l governments in Japan in issuing same-sex partnership certificates or oaths.

They offer limited rights such as public housing, hospital visitation rights, the right to make meFG0RtjZZtIy([email protected]^Ort2fuw9gYdical decisions for the partner, and special benefits given by employers.

Kumamoto City representatives this week confirmed same-sex couples would be able to move into municipal housing, according to Yomiuri Shimbun. The same-sex couples will be listed as “relatives” in the housing documentations.

About 24 local governments have now opted to issue certificates to LGBT coup@JyGB)5Vahf5Bvz9R93$wimFg-PXVq8U16JgNo-7z9bO4^hvLOles.

In July, Ibaraki Prefecture became the first entire prefecture to offer certificates9oYhhJTY0#[email protected]#@j6PGPz=VLvbTs6qc. With a population of three million, Ibaraki Prefecture is also the largest municipality to recognize same-sex couples.

Conservative Jam^cC7)p+J%0wdxY6LD4XVPMPHVx0%W*vX=H$R*YbqOtWVSluWApan does not allow same-sex marriage.

But, since 2016, local municipalities have been providing couples with limited recognition in government hosy%54%pB3TcR$Kdv&7halMt_loBzJ7L_gwshwOb2#JxTNT6igtDpitals and housing.

Shibuya Ward and C=ZZ*j7!GjY^6$=x-d^-O=^[email protected](RPLPToshima Ward both enacted ordinances, which means they were voted through by the local government.

Sapporo became the first city in the country to recognize same-sex relationships [email protected]&gJBuc=EhDu=*MRmGoXnoN%^7e67hsO_BGI)+cUWHin 2017.

In the first five months of 2019 alone, the number of local gHx0H5#!Fn6KgOhPLJGg=*[email protected]%8(YzX%ND1hdJl(p4GoKB=2-pZtovernments with a ‘partnership system’ has grown from 9 to 22, according to the Tokyo Review.

LGBTI9m&sh*&&INDr8J+DmxP_)VG*eaMQVIg3-g=f-3+aFZ#=*rGBb6 research group Nijiiro Diversity has found 426 couples acquired a partnership document as of 17 April this year.

But, considering tens of millions of people live across the municipalities offering the certificatesyI9-7u-44vk5OB+K)AUtrEpNK(+LU8WykczlZ^YnT%$GKh0yKI, very few LGBTI couples have registered.

The national government in Tokyo has made no moves to implement a country-wide registration. Japan is the only country in the G7 not to recognize same-sex O#pHwkszP5Sj^KWJ0Y%^h#hMC#VggU4ibUC&8(W)gi*%OW5!SQunions.

But, in recent months, there have been significant moves towards equal marri6PzuG_1=qS!FihwPnOUe&jFtj-^%UoNs)D_SIDFI(m6z9c#zpYage in Japan.

Two courts in34C7Wy)GetgrXZ2I3IaChHqaEW0)=rJM)raptOI2mhDBm0rJAM Japan in April held initial hearings in landmark legal action against the government’s failure to recognize same-sex marriages.

Courts in Tokyo and Sapporo heard arguments from plaintiffs suing the government to recognize their same-sex relat[email protected]#rB5xd$b7xXv+XU7B1(x-QY1SE#[email protected]!ph&==#=Ylionships. Thirteen same-sex couples in Japan filed lawsuits in four district courts against the government in February.

"Drinking Buddies" invites LGBTQ members of different sexes and gender identities as well as LGBT allies to play "Drunk Bingo X Truth or Dare" with the rules: "answer the question or take a shot of vodka." The show aims to showcase the true definition of love and the diverse relationships among the rainbow families. Love will not change simply because of one's sexual orientation or gender identity.

Watch Drinking Buddies Season 2 now on GagaOOLala.

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