11 Years On: Continued Help Key for Victims in Permanent Housing

Politics Lifestyle

Morioka, Iwate Pref., March 10 (Jiji Press)--Continued support is needed for March 2011 disaster victims in northeastern Japan who have moved into permanent residences from temporary housing.

In Iwate Prefecture, one of the three prefectures hit hardest by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami 11 years ago, a total of over 30,000 survivors living in temporary housing had moved into permanent residences by the end of March 2021.

In the Iwate prefectural government's initial budget for fiscal 2022, which starts next month, the number of spending items related to postdisaster reconstruction is lowest since the quake and tsunami. But officials concerned stress the need to continue providing support to surviving victims to help them stand on their own feet again.

Through a support center established in a coastal area in April 2021, the Iwate government, in collaboration with lawyers and financial planners, helps victims cope with a range of issues related to living in the permanent housing.

Of some 1,000 consultations given at the center by the end of January this year, many were related to financial issues, such as rent payments and housing loan repayments, as well as inheritance issues, because exemptions of medical fee payments ran out in December 2021 following the March 2021 end of the supply of temporary housing. The novel coronavirus pandemic has also had an impact.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press