Fukushima Survivor to Speak at Hiroshima-Nagasaki Commemoration

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At a Fukushima/Hiroshima-Nagasaki commemoration in Little Tokyo last year, doves are released to mark the exact time when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima in 1945. At left is emcee Tsukuru Fors, at center is Fukushima evacuee Michiko Kato, and at right is musician George Abe. (Photo by Jeff Chop)

On the anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, peace, community, labor, environmental, and Native American activists remember the devastation of World War II in the Asia Pacific region and the ongoing danger of the nuclear disaster in Fukushima.

A broad range of organizations come together to remember and demand that the Japanese government address the needs of Fukushima evacuees on Wednesday, Aug. 8, from 6:15 to 7:30 p.m. at Frances Hashimoto Plaza in front of the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center, 244 S. San Pedro St. in Little Tokyo.

Sponsored by the Fukushima Support Committee, the event will feature interfaith and community speakers, including Michiko Kato, a Fukushima evacuee, an immigrant mom and a cancer survivor; Fumiko Kometani, writer and peace activist; Rev. Ryuzen Hayashi of Koyasan Buddhist Temple; and Michael Lindley of Veterans for Peace-Los Angeles.

There will be a taiko performance, releasing of doves, and a moment of silence at 7:02 p.m., making the exact time the A-bomb was dropped on Nagasaki at 11:02 a.m. on Aug. 9 (Japan time).

The Fukushima Support Committee calls on the Japanese government to:

• Reduce the acceptable annual exposure level in Fukushima-impacted areas to a maximum of 1 millisievert per year, which would reflect the international standard;

• Provide funding for relocation, housing, employment, education and other essential support needed by those who chose to evacuate, stay or return to any area where radiation exceeds 1mSv/year;

• Conduct annual comprehensive health check-ups for residents and former residents of areas most affected by the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. Provide free access to the highest level of physical and mental healthcare services;

• Continue providing radiation monitoring stations in public places, so accurate reading of radiation levels in the affected areas are visible and readily available to the public;

• Ensure safe and secure storage of radioactive soil. Establish temporary storage facilities away from residential areas. Prohibit the use of contaminated soil in public works;

• Ensure the health and safety of workers who work in any Fukushima Daiichi-related facilities and decontamination projects, including subcontractors and foreign workers. Provide full disclosures of possible risks of working in these facilities and projects prior to the start of an employment. Guarantee an access to routine medical examination to all workers, regardless of their employment status;

• Ensure a responsible management of radioactive water in the Fukushima Daiichi facilities to prevent it from further polluting land and ocean in the surrounding area.

Sponsoring and endorsing organizations: Fukushima Support Committee, San Fernando Valley JACL, Progressive Asian Network for Action, Physicians for Social Responsibility-L.A., Nikkei Progressives, Veterans for Peace-L.A., MLK Coalition of Greater L.A., Topanga Peace Alliance, SoCal 350 Climate Action, Los Angeles Corean Progressive JINBO Network, Nikkei for Civil Rights and Redress, VietUnity-L.A.

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