Japan: Panasonic to recognize people in same-sex unions

From April, Panasonic Corp. will recognize its employees in same-sex unions, possibly conferring on them the paid leave and other benefits currently enjoyed by married employees. The change in policy was prompted by requests from its employees and the International Olympic Committee’s ban on discrimination based on sexual orientation under its Olympic Charter. 

Few Japanese companies have taken such a bold step, but with the group’s global workforce of about 250,000, Panasonic could motivate other firms to follow suit. The company also plans to place a nondiscrimination clause on sexual orientation in its employee code of conduct.

Because only a handful of local administrations in Japan are currently issuing certificates recognize same-sex partnerships as being equivalent to marriage, Panasonic is still trying to determine what kind of documentation it will require to recognize same-sex unions. Read more via Japan Times