Fukuoka City Mayor Soichiro Takashima has announced reforms to local administrative procedures to prevent the spread of the COVID-19. This time of year usually sees a surge in the number of people move between residences, which means ward offices become busy with residents registering changes in addresses. Mayor Takashima revealed that locals will now be able to reserve a time slot in advance. The law requires face-to-face identification, so a trip to your nearest ward office will still be necessary. However, the city hopes that the initiative, which is the first of its kind in Japan, will help reduce the number of on-site procedures and keep crowds to a minimum. Residents who apply for a certificate of residence at a ward office will also be given the option of receiving the document via the post so that they do not have to spend longer than necessary in public waiting areas.
Furthermore, the city has made arrangements with the Board of Education to simplify procedures for children planning to transfer to a new school in the coming semester. This move will further reduce the number of residents waiting in ward offices. The mayor also took the opportunity to remind people that they can use copy machines in convenience stores to pick up a certificate of residence and/or registered seal if they hold a My Number card. The city is making a conscious effort to increase the number of governmental procedures that can be completed online. The mayor does not want these efforts to go waste and would like to ensure the work currently being undertaken helps make Fukuoka a better place to live in the future.
The city will give local medical institutions priority when it comes to their remaining stock of 10,000 surgical face masks. Plans are in place to negotiate with various countries and businesses to secure a new supply of masks. As of March 4, 86 people in Fukuoka City have been tested for coronavirus, and two have come back positive. New systems and devices are being put in place that will allow the city to test up to 240 people a day for the virus by the end of March. Source: Mayor Takashima’s blog 03/05/2020
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