On May 25, 2020, Kagawa Bar Association expressed its objection to the Kagawa Prefecture’s ordinance limiting minors playing games.
Kagawa passed the game ban statute on March 18, 2020 and the law became effective on the 1st of April. The new ordinance states that excessive use of Internet and video games will have a negative impact on children both academically and physically. The decree also says that WHO officially recognizes gaming disorder as a mental health condition. The ordinance limits the use of electronic devices up to 60 minutes per day on weekdays, and prohibits access to electronic devices after 10pm.
As of today, the game industry has not released any comments in response to the ordinance. Also, WHO strongly encourages people to “stay home and play” amid COVID-19. Many gaming companies have expressed their support for the stay home recommendations.
According to the Kagawa Bar Association, the excessive use of video games has not been proved to link to children falling behind in school. It also points out that the Article 18 of the ordinance may be deemed unconstitutional. The association is requesting Kagawa Prefecture to abolish the entire ordinance. It is specifically demanding to void the Article 18.2 immediately because it believes the ban may be an infringement of the Rights of the Child.