Japan: Man sues women's university over rejection

A view of Fukuoka Image copyright AFP
Image caption The university, in the southwestern city of Fukuoka, says it hasn't yet seen the man's complaint

A Japanese man is suing a women-only university for rejecting his application to study there, it's been reported.

The man, who hasn't been named, wants to become a dietician and applied to study at Fukuoka Women's University, in southwestern Japan, according to a Kyodo news agency report published in the Bangkok Post. It's the only public university in the region which runs the course, the agency reports. But it rejected his application, a decision he argues amounts to gender discrimination. Japan's constitution states that people shouldn't be discriminated against because of their sex, and that everyone has the right to an equal education.

"A public university is a public entity that is being maintained by tax," he says in his complaint, filed at the Fukuoka District Court. "If my application is rejected, the path to become a dietician would be narrow as I will be forced to go to a university outside the prefecture or a private college." His lawyer says this is the first time the constitutionality of a public women's university has been challenged in Japan. The man is asking for compensation and wants his application to be accepted. In November, when he announced his intention to sue the institution, a university official said: "We have a 91-year history of promoting women's education. We are determined to continue to provide education to prepare women for leadership roles."

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