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原爆症訴訟 認定基準の再見直しが必要だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(May. 29, 2009)
Review of A-bomb sufferer criteria needed
原爆症訴訟 認定基準の再見直しが必要だ(5月29日付・読売社説)

As atomic bomb survivors grow older, the state should not prolong legal battles with them.
 被爆者は高齢化している。国は裁判で長く争い続けるべきではない。

The Tokyo High Court handed down a ruling Thursday regarding the recognition of people suffering from illnesses caused by radiation in the 1945 atomic bombings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki that helps atomic bomb victims on a level that far outstrips the state's criteria for recognition.
 原爆症の認定をめぐる訴訟で、東京高裁は、国の認定基準を大きく上回る範囲で被爆者を救済する判断を示した。

Atomic bomb survivors who are not recognized by the state as suffering illnesses due to radiation from the bombings have filed group lawsuits across the nation. Before Thursday, 17 rulings had been handed down by district and high courts, with most of the plaintiffs receiving favorable decisions.
 国から原爆症と認定されなかった被爆者が全国で集団訴訟を起こしている。これまでに全国の地・高裁で17回の判決が出ており、大半の原告が勝訴してきた。

Thursday's ruling by the Tokyo High Court recognized that nine of the 10 plaintiffs, who were not recognized by the state, as suffering from illnesses due to radiation from the bombings.
 今回の東京高裁判決も、国が認めなかった10人の原告のうち9人を原爆症と認めた。

The ruling strongly urges the state to review the criteria for recognition of atomic bomb disease sufferers. The government needs to take this ruling seriously.
 国に認定基準の見直しを改めて強く迫るものであり、政府は重く受け止めねばならない。

===

Opening the door wider

Under the Atomic Bomb Victims Relief Law, people qualified for recognition as atomic bomb victims are those who were near ground zero in Hiroshima or Nagasaki on the days of the bombings and the two weeks after. These certified survivors are provided with atomic bomb survivor health handbooks and are entitled to free medical treatment. The majority of the survivors receive monthly health care stipends of about 34,000 yen.
 被爆者援護法では、原爆投下時とその後2週間以内に爆心地周辺にいた人は被爆者と認定される。被爆者健康手帳が交付されて医療費が無料となるほか、大半の人に月額約3万4000円の健康管理手当が支給されている。

If these survivors have diseases that are recognized as due to radiation exposure, they are entitled to receive a special medical allowance of about 140,000 yen per month instead of the monthly health care stipends.
 さらに、病気が放射線による原爆症と認定されると、健康管理手当に代わり、医療特別手当が約14万円支給される。

Currently, about 240,000 people have atomic bomb survivor health handbooks. However, strict criteria, such as the distance the atomic bomb survivor was from ground zero, has prevented them from being recognized as suffering illnesses due to radiation, even if they have developed diseases. As a result, until about two years ago, only about 2,000 survivors had been recognized as atomic bomb radiation disease patients.
 被爆者手帳を取得している人は約24万人いる。だが、病気になった場合に原爆症と認められるには爆心地からの距離など厳しい条件があり、2年前まで認定者は2000人余りに過ぎなかった。

But the government for its part has not entirely been sitting on its hands. In the summer of 2007, then Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced an easing in the criteria for recognizing sufferers of atomic bomb-linked disease. The government then began to recognize atomic bomb survivors with five specific diseases, including cancer, as sufferers of atomic bomb-related disease.
 政府も全く無策だったわけではない。2007年夏に当時の安倍首相が認定基準の緩和を表明し、がんなど五つの病気は積極的に原爆症と認めるようになった。

Since then, the door has opened wider, with about 3,000 people being newly recognized just in the last fiscal year. With eased criteria, 60 percent of plaintiffs have been recognized by the state as suffering illnesses caused by atomic bomb radiation.
 昨年度だけで約3000人が認定されるなど、以前と比べれば格段に門戸は広がった。この措置で原告の6割はすでに国からも原爆症と認定されている。

===

Change must come quickly

However, Thursday's ruling is a message from the judiciary that this has not been enough.
 しかし、まだ十分ではない、というのが司法のメッセージだ。

Besides the five specific diseases under the government's recognition criteria, the bar is still set high for victims seeking recognition as sufferers. In a string of lawsuits, those with cirrhosis of the liver and underactive thyroid function--illnesses that are not eligible--have been recognized by the courts as sufferers of atomic bomb diseases.
 「積極認定」の対象となる5疾病以外は今もハードルが高い。一連の訴訟では、対象外の肝硬変や甲状腺機能低下症も同様に原爆症と認める判決が続いている。

In addition, nearly 8,000 people have filed applications for government recognition and are waiting for decisions. The government says more than 20,000 people will be recognized within 10 years at this pace. But considering that the average age of survivors is currently about 75, this pace is too slow.
 また、審査待ちの認定申請者が8000人近くもいる。政府は、今のペースなら10年で2万人以上が認定されるとしているが、被爆者の平均年齢が75歳であることを考えれば、速いとは言えない。

The government should swiftly recognize people as sufferers of atomic bomb-related diseases based on precedents that have been set by courts. Criteria also needs to be further eased by adding to the list of recognized diseases.
 これまでに判決が認めたことを踏まえて、迅速に原爆症と認定していくべきだ。積極認定の対象疾病を追加し、基準を一段と緩和する必要があろう。

A ruling coalition project team has submitted to the government its report seeking a wide review of the recognition framework. The government should work to settle this issue swiftly.
 与党プロジェクトチームも政府に、認定の枠組みを幅広く見直すよう求める意見書を出した。政府は早急に決着を図るべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, May 29, 2009)
(2009年5月29日01時42分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2009-05-29 08:20 | 英字新聞

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