Nursing Care Industry Finds Relief after Japan Eases Entry Ban for Foreign Skilled Workers

Foreign nationals with “specified skilled worker” visa status are once again entering Japan following the easing of border control measures in March related to the coronavirus. Foreign workers have sometimes waited years for permission to enter the country. Many have found employment at nursing homes, which have suffered labor shortages.

“Specified skilled worker” residence status allows foreigners working in 14 designated job categories — including nursing care and construction — to stay in Japan for five years. The government launched the program in April 2019. Earlier this month Ni Made Susiyantini served food at the Kagiyamaen senior care home in Iruma, Saitama prefecture. “The meals are ready,” the 26-year-old Indonesian said to care recipients. “They look tasty, don’t they?”

Susiyantini arrived in Japan on March 12 and started work on March 17, after a three-day quarantine period. She studied at a Japanese language school, and in April 2018 started working part time at a nursing home for two years. After deciding to return to work in Japan once more, she took and passed exams for Japanese-language proficiency and nursing skills in August 2020 from Indonesia. In February 2021, Susiyantini was offered a job at Kagiyamaen, but because of the pandemic, she was forced to stay in Indonesia for months without knowledge of when she would be allowed to enter Japan. Faced with an uncertain future, her family advised her to find employment in Indonesia.

Meanwhile, Susiyantini and another foreign worker had been scheduled to start at Kagiyamaen in May 2021, but they were still unable to gain entry into Japan. In November, when restrictions were temporarily relaxed, Kagiyamaen signed a contract on behalf of the pair for an apartment, but their entry was postponed again when infections began to spread once more. “I didn’t expect it would take so long for them to come to Japan,” said care home director Daisuke Miyakoshi. “I want them to start by getting accustomed to the working environment and to become actively engaged with the work.”

According to the Health, Labor, and Welfare Ministry, since the end of January 2020 — when the coronavirus began to spread — more than 9,000 people outside Japan have taken the exam for specified nursing care skills. However, many of them have been unable to get to Japan. Expectations are running high in the nursing care industry, which is suffering a serious labor shortage. Many facilities have been affected by the ban on the entry of nonresident foreign nationals.

(Source: Star Advertiser | Pic: Optimizing Bone Health, Nestle)

Related Articles

General
News
The Japanese yen continued to weaken against the dollar on Monday to a more than six-year low — plagued by a combination of rising global rates plus low growth and inflation relative to the rest of the world.
General, Holiday/Home Makers
Information
So you’re ready to buy your first property in Japan? Or maybe you’ve already been down that rabbit hole and are wondering if you’ve done something wrong? One commonly overlooked concept in purchasing real estate around the world is due diligence. By definition, due diligence in terms of real estate is care taken by research and analysis of a property and its affiliations in preparation for a transaction. One of the quirks about the Japanese real estate market, however, is that the due diligence is only conducted once your offer is accepted.
General
Information, News
Many Japanese abodes in 2021 are returning to the roots of traditional residences and adding an earthen floor entryway or incorporating modern variants of the space. Japanese homes already have a small "genkan" entrance area for people to store their shoes before going inside. Now, more apartment buyers are asking for a larger “doma” traditional earthen-floored space, in which they can walk around while wearing footwear and store items for outdoor use. The demand for doma appears to be related to the boom in people engaging in more outdoor leisure activities amid the COVID-19 pandemic and increased consumer desire to maintain cleanliness in the home by separating spaces.
General, Investors/Business
Information
You want to profit from the weaker yen and invest in Japan, but don't know where to start? Before diving into the market here, you’ll need a general investment strategy, something that will help you decide on where, how, and what to invest in! For those that have never stepped foot into the country, it may seem like an extra challenge with finding the best locations and criteria. Let’s break it down to make better sense of it... Follow these rules!