Nationwide probe after Tokyo med school excludes women
Tokyo, Aug 10 (AFP) Japan today launched an unprecedented probe into gender discrimination at all the nation's medical universities after a Tokyo medical school admitted to altering the entrance test results of female applicants to exclude them.
Authorities said they would also check the gender ratio of successful applicants for the past six months, and confirmed it was the first ever such nationwide investigation.
"If their answers are judged as not reasonable, we will ask additional questions or visit them directly," a ministry official said, adding that the results of the probe would be published as early as next month.
The scandal was uncovered by investigators looking into claims the university padded the scores of an education ministry bureaucrat's son to help him gain admission.
According to local media, other instances had been discovered where individual entrance test scores were revised upwards, suggesting potential favouritism.
Sources told local media the discrimination was the result of a view that women would not be reliable doctors after graduation as they often quit to marry and start a family.
"People say female doctors tend to quit. That's total nonsense," said Mizuho Fukushima, a senior lawmaker of the opposition Social Democratic Party, who joined the group's meeting today.
"We have to get angry and change this no matter what." Japan's notoriously long work hours and a male-dominated business culture force many women out of the workplace when they start families.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has made "womenomics" -- or boosting women's participation in the workplace and promoting women to senior positions -- a priority, but the pace of progress has been slow. (AFP)
RUP(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)