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Gay-Friendly Work Policies Are Finally Catching on in Japan

  • Nomura, Dai-Ichi Life, Sony strive to improve inclusiveness
  • Diverse workforce seen boosting employee morale, sales
The Tokyo Tower, left, stands amid buildings in this aerial photograph taken in Tokyo, Japan, on Wednesday, June 24, 2015.
Photographer: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg
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Yusuke Kitamura hid his sexuality from colleagues for most of his career. It was only after joining one of Japan’s oldest brokerages last year that he could tell them he was gay.

“It was so stressful having to lie, and I was hoping to come out at some point,” Kitamura, 33, told a packed room of human resource professionals at an event on workplace diversity in Tokyo. “Now that I’m out, I’ve gone one step further to really communicate with people. I make it a point to talk about my private life.”