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Homeless men in Kamagasaki, Osaka. Photo by Andreas Seibert.

Yesterday I paid a visit to the Kamagasaki district of Osaka, where there are thousands of homeless people. Many of them are middle-aged and elderly men who try finding day work, usually in construction. Aside from the suffering that comes with not having a warm place to sleep at night; gambling, drugs, and prostitution are also big problems in that community. One of the day laborers, who is involved in an NPO (Non-Profit Organization) to help the homeless, showed me around the area. He said that the number of homeless people is continuing to grow each year in Japan. Indeed, I was shocked at what I saw: a neighborhood so much different than what I am accustomed to seeing in Kyoto and other parts of Japan. I wonder how many Japanese people are aware of how big the problem is becoming?

# posted on 11/07/2003          

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