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トップページ > For Refugees (難民の方へ) > Overview of Information about COVID-19

For Refugees (難民の方へ) − Overview of Information about COVID-19

日本語(にほんご) عربى فارسی

For those who are refugees living in Japan, we will provide important information concerning the novel coronavirus. If there is any information or program that you are interested in, please research further and ask for more information.

※This website was made with the support of READY FOR, Covid-19 Relief Fund.

 New Information

Contents

  1. General Consulatation
  2. The Situation of Coronavirus Spread in Japan
  3. How to Prevent Contracting Covid-19
  4. What to do if You Suspect You May Have Covid-19
  5. Consultation about Work
  6. If You Need Money
  7. Concerning Immigration Procedures
  8. Concerning Birth, Child-rearing, and Children's Education
  9. Concerning Housing
  10. Other Consultation

1. General Consultation

When you are not sure where to seek consultation, please call numbers below.

For those living in Tokyo: Tokyo Coronavirus Support Center for Foreign Residents (TOCOS)

  • Phone:0120-296-004(toll-free)
  • Laguage:English, French, Simple Japanese, 14 others.
  • Hours:10:00~17:00(weekdays)
  • Pamphlets:Simple JapaneseEnglishFrench

For those in Saitama: Saitama Information and Support

  • Phone:048-833-3296
  • Language:English and others
  • Hours:9:00~16:00(weekdays)
  • Pamphlet:JapaneseOthers Languages

For those in Chiba: Chiba International Center

  • Phone:043-297-2966 or 043-297-0245
  • Language:English and others
  • Hours:9:00~12:00, 13:00~16:00(weekdays)

For consultation in other areas, please check NHK "Multilingual coronavirus hotlines in Japan".

2. Concerning the Situation of Coronavirus in Japan

Sites to visit for more information about the situation of coronavirus spread in Japan.

3. How to Prevent Contracting Covid-19

What everyone should be careful about:

  • Please wear a mask. Also, when you cough or sneeze, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve. Throw away used tissues as soon as possible. (If available, use a trash can with a lid.)
  • Just wearing a mask is not enough to prevent contracting the virus. Wash your hands and gargle thoroughly. Use hand sanitizers to disinfect your hands and fingers.
  • Don't go to places where many people are gathered. Maintain sufficient distance (2 meters or more) between yourself and other people.
  • For ventilation, open windows and doors in your room consistently.
  • Maintain a consistent lifestyle and be sure to take plenty of rest.
  • Eat balanced meals and keep yourself hydrated.
  • When you have symptoms of a cold such as a fever, stay home. Do not go to school or work.

What to do when you suspect that someone in your family may have the coronavirus:

  • Stay in separate rooms.
  • Take care of the infected person with as few people as possible.
  • Wear a mask.
  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Vent the room.
  • Use disinfectant on anything that you both touch.
  • Wash linen and garments.
  • Seal garbage and throw it away.

Things to remember when wearing a mask

  • Wash your hands thoroughly before putting on a mask.

  • Make sure the mask covers both your nose and mouth. Fit the mask to your face so there is no large gap.

  • When wearing a mask, do not touch the front of the mask.

  • When taking off your mask, don't touch the front of the mask. Remove it using only the string wrapped around your ear.

  • Don't leave disposable masks in public place or on tables, throw them away in the garbage can.
  • After removing your mask, wash your hands again.

When wearing a mask, be careful not to get heatstroke

Wearing a mask in high temperature or high-humidity areas can increase the risk of heatstroke. When outside and keeping enough space from other people (at least 2 meters), it may be a good idea to take off your mask and rest for a short while. Avoid heavy activity and exercise while wearing a mask, and even if you do not feel thirsty be sure to take plenty of liquid. When going outside, avoid hot days and times, and wear cool clothes.

Reference: Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare "Points for preventing heat stroke in the "New Lifestyle""(Japanese, Simple Japanese, English

How to wash your hands

Illustration:EnglishFrenchArabic

When to wash your hands:

  • After returning from outside.

  • After touching a place where many other people may have touched.

  • After coughing sneezing or blowing your nose.

  • When taking care of those with symptoms.

  • When cooking.

  • Before eating.

  • After handling waste from family or animals.

  • After using the restroom.

For further information

Please visit the sites below for further information.

4. What to do if You Suspect You may Have Covid-19

Where to look

Below is a site which explains the flow from infection to diagnosis and treatment.

For further information

Please call the Coronavirus Consultation Center in your area(TokyoSaitamaChiba). Depending on your area, there may be Medical Associations or clinics which provide consultation.

If you need interpretation
Cost for testing and treatment

PCR testing does not require money. However, primary consultation fees at the hospital will be paid by the patient.

Reference:Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare "FAQ about the novel coronavirus: To Medical Institutions and Testing Facilities"

5. Consultation about Work

Missing Work →Leave Allowance(きゅうぎょうてあて)

When you are temporarily laid off from work for company-side circumstances, the company must pay 60% of the average salary to all their employees. This is regardless of the employee's status as a full time or part time worker.

For further information

Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare "For Foreigners Working in Companies":JapaneseSimple JapaneseEnglish

For consultation
  1. First, consult with your company.
  2. If it still not resolved when you consult your company, please refer to the services in "Other".

If you have been laid off. →Disemployment Allowance(しつぎょうてあて)

You can receive 50-80% of your most recent 6 months' wages (there is an upper and lower limit). Age, timing of accession to employment insurance, and whether separation from work was by the employee's own will may affect the allowance.

For further information

Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare "For Foreigners Working in Companies":JapaneseSimple JapaneseEnglish

For consultation

Contact the nearest Hello Work(List of Hello Work locationsList Hello Work locations with interpreters)。If there is anything else you have trouble with, please refer to the services in "Other".

Special notes

In order to be enrolled in employment insurance, you must have been working for 6 months or more.

Other

Below are services where you can find information and consultation about work in multiple languages.

For further information

Labour Lawyers Association of Japan "Covid-19 Labor & Employment Q&A For Workers (Ver.2)"

For consultation

6. If You Need Money

How to receive benefit money: Special Fixed Benefit(とくべつ ていがく きゅうふきん)(Government program)

Each person can receive one hundred thousand yen from the government. Anyone who was registered as a resident on April 27, 2020 is eligible.

How to apply: Application forms are sent in May and June to each house of those who are eligible. Within 3 months, fill out the form and send it to your local city hall (Shiyakusho or Kuyakusho) with documents to prove your bank account information and personal identity. For those who do not have a bank account, please fill in the other necessary information and take it directly to the city hall. You can receive the money at a later date.

For further information
  • About the system
    • Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications "Portal site for Special Cash Payments":JapaneseEnglish
    • note"Regardless of the citizenship, all people in Japan will receive 100,000 yen cash as a life support for COVID 19":French, Arabic, Turkish, etc.
  • How to fill out the application form
    • Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications "Portal site for Special Cash Payments: How to fill out the application form":JapaneseEnglish
    • with illustration with news "How to fill out the application form":Simple Japanese

    • video ORJ"Special Cash Payment Video":Japanese,English, etc.
For consultation:Call Center by Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications
  • Phone:0120-260-020(Japanese)
  • Hours:9:00~18:30(every day)
Special notes
  • Fill out the application in Japanese.
  • For those receiving financial support from RHQ (Hogohi): The special fixed benefit is not considered as "income" by RHQ, so the amount of money you receive from RHQ will not be reduced even if you receive the benefit. However, you must report to RHQ that you received the money and keep a copy of documents which shows that you have applied for the special fixed benefit.
  • Those who do not have at least a 3 month residency status, those who are on temporary release (karihoumen) and those who are being detained at immigration facilities are not eligible for this program. However, newborn babies who were not registered as residents on April 27, 2020 are still able to receive the one hundred thousand yen, if their parents are refugee applicants with residencial status. Consult your local government office (city hall, shiyakusho, kuyakusho) and get an application for your children as well.
  • For those who have received violence or sexual violence from your spouse or family member, those in poverty, etc., and those who have taken refuge, even in the case that your current address and the address you have registered on file are different, you can receive the benefit for yourself and those with you (children, etc.) in the city, ward, town, or village where you are now. For those who have applied separately for the benefit and those with them, even if the head of household applies for them, the head of household will not receive the benefit. For further information, consult your local government office.

Receving benefit money: Emergency Refugee Relief Fund(しんがた ころな いみん・なんみん きんきゅう しえん ききん)(Non-government program)

Each person can receive thirty thousand yen.

Anyone to whom any of the below applies is eligible.

  • Immigrants, refugees, and people with roots in other countries, anyone else who does not qualify for the government's benefit money, including those who for reasons such as DV are unable to actually use their benefit money.
  • Those immigrants, refugees, and people with roots in other countries who are eligible for the benefit money, but are struggling with money. Citizenship and resident status do not affect eligibility.

【Reference】Solidarity Network with Migrants Japan "【Emergency Project】Cooperation with Migrants and Refugees Coronavirus Emergency Relief Fund'"

For consultation

For those who are registered at JAR, please speak to a JAR staff member.

Special notes

Those who are receiving financial support from RHQ are not eligible. If you receive this money, the money you can receive from RHQ will be reduced by the same amount.

Borrowing money: Temporary Loan Emergency Funds(きんきゅう こぐちしきん の とくれいかしつけ)(Government program)

Each household may borrow up to two hundred thousand yen. Due to the coronavirus, households who have had income reduced because of suspension of business are eligible to receive temporary emergency funds for maintaining their livelihood.

In principle, the money should be paid back within 3 years (there is no interest), and in the event that the reduction in income continues, at the time of redemption, the redemption of payment may be forgiven for those households which are resident tax-exempt households.

For further information
Special notes

If it is determined that it would be difficult for you to pay the money back, you may not be able to receive a loan. Those who are receiving welfare are not eligible.

Borrowing money: General Support Fund Special Loan(そうごうしえんききん の とくれいかしつけ)(Government program)

Single-member households can receive up to one-hundred fifty thousand, multiple-member households can receive up to two-hundred thousand yen per month for three months. Those whose livelihoods have been impacted, including income reduction, laid off or unable to maintain their livelihood, due to coronavirus are eligible for General Support Fund Special Loam.

In principle, the money should be paid back within 11 years (there is no interest), and if the reduction in income continues, at the time of redemption, the redemption of payment may be forgiven for those households which are resident tax-exempt households.

For counsultation
For counsultation

The Council of Social Welfare for each prefecture is accepting applications. You may request consultation at your local government office.

Special notes

If it is determined that it will be difficult for you to pay back, you may not be able to borrow money. Also, those who are receiving welfare are not eligible.

Receiving money: Protection money(ほごひ)(Refugee Assistance Headquarters - RHQ)

Refugee Assistance Headquarters (RHQ) provides money for refugee applicants struggling with livelihood.

This money is provided in principle for 4 months and includes ①Livelihood money (For adults, 1600 yen per day, for children 800 yen) ②Lodging fees (Forty thousand yen for those who live alone) ③Medical fees (as needed).

Those to whom either of the following applies are eligible.

  • Those who are applying for refugee status for the first time.
  • Those who are in the process of going to court over the result of their first refugee application and are applying for a second time.

In order to receive support, you must receive an examination from RHQ. This examination usually takes at least 1 month.

For consultation

Refugee Assistance Headquarters (RHQ) Protection Unit

  • Phone:0120-925-357、03-3449-7029
  • Hours:10:00~12:30, 13:30~17:00(Weekdays)

Deferring payment for services

For those who have been impacted by coronavirus, payment can be deferred for the following services.

Water fees

Payment for water and sewage fees may be deferred. Depending on the local government agency, deferral period and procedure may differ.

Deferral period
  • Tokyo: After application, payment can be deferred for up to 4 months.
  • Chiba: Each area is different.
  • Saitama: Each area is different.
For consultation
  • Tokyo (23 wards):03-5326-1101
  • Tokyo (other areas):0570-091-101
  • Other prefectures: Please contact the number on the notification of water usage mailed to your house.
Electricity, Gas fees

It is possible to defer payment of electric and gas fees. Depending on the company with which you are contracted, deferral period and procedure may differ.

  • Tokyo Electric: You can defer payment for 2 months. Those who are receiving the General Support Fund Special Loan from the Council of Social Welfare are eligible.
  • Tokyo Gas: You can defer payment of fees due in February - May for 2 months. Those who are receiving the Temporary Loan Emergency Funds and General Support Fund Special Loan are eligible, as well as those who Tokyo Gas determines are temporarily unable to pay for gas and electricity because of suspension of business or job loss.
For consultation
  • Tokyo Electric
    • Phone:0120-993-052 or 0120-995-113
    • Hours:9:00~17:00(Monday-Saturday, excluding holidays)
  • Tokyo Gas:You can apply via WEBor phone.
    • Phone:0570-002211 or 03-3344-9100
    • Hours:9:00~19:00(Monday-Saturday)、9:00~17:00(Sunday, holidays)
Phone service payment

You can defer payment of cell phone service payment. Depending on the company you have a contract with, the response may differ.

For example, those who have contracts with Docomo, KDDI, and Softbank may defer payment for bills from the end of February until the end of June.

For further information

About the response of the company you have a contract with, it is possible to check: Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications "Situation of Responses to Coronavirus Spread for Deferral of Payment Deadlines"(Japanese)

For counsultation

Please use the contact information on your cell phone bill.

7. Concerning Immigration Procedures

Refugee application

There are cases where your interview at immigration may be postponed. It may take longer to complete procedures.

For consultation

Immigration Information Center

  • Phone:0570-013904、03-5796-7112(IP,PHS,from abroad)
  • Hours:8:30~17:15(Weekdays)

Tokyo Immigration Bureau:0570-034259

Change and Renewal of Residence Status

Even after the validity of your current residence status expires, you have 3 months to change or renew it. There is no need to go to the immigration office immediately. For example, those whose residence status expires in June have until September to change or renew their status.

For further information

Immigration Services Agency "Extension of the period for acceptance of applications and extension of the application examination results in order to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19)":JapaneseEnglish

For counsultation

Immigration Information Center

  • Phone:0570-013904、03-5796-7112(IP,PHS,from aborad)
  • Hours:8:30~17:15(Weekdays)

Tokyo Immigration Bureau:0570-034259

Special notes

Those whose residence status expires in March - July of 2020 are eligible.

This is a temporary measure until spread of coronavirus is contained. Check Tokyo Immigration Bureau's twitter (Japanese,Simple Japanese,English, etc.) for the most updated information.

Extension of Examination result reception

For those who have already filed applications for Change of Residence Status and/ Renewal of Residence status, you may wait to go receive the result of the examination. Usually you would have 2 months from the date of expiration of your residence status, but this may be extended a further 3 months.

For further information

"Extension of the period for acceptance of applications and extension of the application examination results in order to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19)":JapaneseEnglish

For further information

Immigration Information Center

  • Phone:0570-013904、03-5796-7112(IP,PHS,from abroad)
  • Hours:8:30~17:15(Weekdays)

Tokyo Immigration Bureau:0570-034259

Special notes

Those who have a Residence Card (Zairyu Card) are eligible.

This is a temporary measure until spread of coronavirus is contained. Check Tokyo Immigration Bureau's twitter (Japanese,Simple Japanese,English, etc.) for the most updated information.

Deferral of reporting for those on temporary release (Karihoumen)

For the present, it is not necessary for those on temporary release to report to the immigration office. For those of concern, there should be a phone call from the immigration office for a more thorough explanation.

For further information

Immigration Information Center

  • Phone:0570-013904、03-5796-7112(IP,PHS,from abroad)
  • Hours:8:30~17:15(Weekdays)

Tokyo Immigration Bureau:0570-034259

Special notes

This is a temporary measure until spread of coronavirus is contained. Check Tokyo Immigration Bureau's twitter (Japanese,Simple Japanese,English, etc.) for the most updated information.

8. Concerning Birth, Child-rearing, and Children's Education

Information for pregnant women

A leaflet directed toward pregnant women produced by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare

Services for the Health in Asian & African Regions (SHARE),【*Updated: For pregnant women (Multilingual)】COVID-19 Countermeasures for Pregnant Women」:JapaneseEnglishArabicother languages

Extraordinary special benefits for child-raising households(りんじ とくべつ きゅうふきん)(government program)

Ten thousand yen may be received per child. Those who were receiving child allowance in March and April 2020 are eligible. Provision will begin in June (there may be some difference depending on the local government agency).

Special notes

There is no need to apply. It will be transferred to you with the child allowance you normally receive.

Emergency relief funds for students(がくせい しえん きんきゅう きゅうふきん)(government program)

One hundred thousand to two hundred thousand yen will be provided for students in graduate school, undergraduate school, junior college, technical college, vocational school and Japanese schools. Those who are independent from their family and are earning money for school through part-time jobs, and due to impact from the coronavirus, have had their income from their part time job severely cut and may have difficulty continuing their studies are eligible.

For further information

Ministry of Education, "Emergency Student Support Handout for Continuing Studies: Application Guide (for Students)":JapaneseEnglish

For consultation

For those who wish to receive the benefits, please submit the necessary documents to your school. The school will perform an examination and, if the conditions to receive the benefits are met, the money will be deposited into your bank account. At some schools it is possible to apply by LINE.

9. Concerning Housing

If you cannot pay your rent. →Housing Security Benefits(じゅうたく かくほ きゅうふきん) (Government program)

The government will pay 3 months (as a general rule), but at most 9 months of rent. Those who have left or lost their job within the last 2 years, as well as those who have had their income reduced due to suspension of business are eligible.

For further information
For consultation

Contact the self-reliance consultation support organization (Jiritsu Soudan Shien Kikan) in the place where you live.

Phone list(Saitama is on page 11, Chiba is on page 14, Tokyo is on page 16)

Special notes

The limit of the money which can be provided differs by organization. Registration at Hello Work is not necessary, but a required condition is that you show "Sincerity and zeal in job-hunting".

If you lost a place to live →Temporary Living Support Project(いちじ せいかつ しえん じぎょう)(Government program)

For a limited period of time (in principle 3 months), you can receive support for lodging, clothes and food. For your livelihood afterward as well, you can receive help in securing lodging and employment support. Those who do not have a residency and those who are continuously staying at internet cafes, those who do not have a secure place to live etc. are eligible.

For further information

FACIL"Multilingual Version【Temporary Living Support Project 'Ichiji Seikatsu Shien Jigyo'(Including Housing Support) ~Food, clothing, and shelter provided to those with nowhere to live~】":JapaneseEnglishArabic

For consultation

Contact the self-reliance consultation support organization (Jiritsu Soudan Shien Kikan) of the area in which you live.

Phone list(Saitama is on page 11, Chiba is on page 14, Tokyo is on page 16)

Special notes

There are local governments which are not implementing this system. In that case you will be unable to use it.

If you lost a place to live →TOKYO Challengenet (Tokyo's system)

Tokyo may provide temporary housing for those who have been living in Tokyo for over 6 months.

For further information

Tokyo "Challengenet"(Japanese)

For consultation

Call Tokyo Challengenet.

  • Phonte:0120-874-225
  • Hours:10:00-17:00(Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday)、10:00-20:00(Tuesday, Thursday)

10. Other Consultation

  • DV Hotline Plus (Government system):JapaneseEnglish
    • You can receive help 24 hours concerning violence received from your partner. Phone and mail are only in Japanese, but the chat function is available in other languages including English.
  • Point-and-Speak YUBISASHI:English、French
    • A point-and-speak file specified for coronavirus. It can help when communicating in Japanese.

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