Metro Weekly

Nintendo Will Honor Gay Partnerships Even When Japan Won’t

“We will continue working to create an environment where each of our many diverse employees can fully realize their talents,” Nintendo said.

Mario explores New Donk City, Credit: Nintendo

Video game creator Nintendo will recognize people in same-sex relationships, just as they had recognized “traditional marriages” — even when the country of Japan doesn’t.

Last week the $95 billion company released its corporate social responsibility initiatives (CSRI) with one thing standing out.

In the “Introduction of a Partnership System” portion of the CSRI, reports Go Nintendo, Nintendo restated that as of March 2021, the company has had a policy where  “same-sex partners” will have the “same benefits as employees in an opposite-sex marriage.”

This policy contrasts with the legal battle ongoing in Japan to get same-sex couples recognized by law. Attempts at national and municipal legal changes have been made, but nothing has come from it. 

In a recent case on June 20 in Osaka, it was found that “under the constitution, the definition of marriage did not extend to partnerships between people of the same gender.” This effectively bans same-sex marriage in the country.

Nintendo’s statement reads simply that if you are in a “common law” marriage, you will be granted the same rights as “traditional” couples.

“Although same-sex marriages are not currently recognized under Japanese law, this system ensures employees who are in a domestic partnership with a same-sex partner have the same benefits as employees in an opposite-sex marriage,” the policy reads. We have also established that a common-law marriage between couples will be observed in the same way as a legal marriage.”

The statement also explains the internal strides Nintendo has made to keep all of its employees at the forefront of the company’s policies.

“In the Code of Conduct for our employees, we had already established that “we do not discriminate based on race, ethnicity, nationality, ideology, religion, creed, origin, social status, class, occupation, gender, age, disability, sexual orientation, or gender identity,” prohibiting all forms of discrimination.

“We revised our internal regulations regarding harassment to clearly prohibit discriminatory comments based on sexual orientation or gender identity, as well as disclosing someone’s privately held sexual orientation against their will.”

Nintendo pledges to “continue our work to create an environment where each of our many diverse employees can fully realize their talents.”

Japan is the only G7 nation that has chosen “not legally to recognize same-sex marriage.”

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