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Color vision tests to be abolished.

TOKYO, June 22 Kyodo

The Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry plans to abolish mandatory color vision tests conducted by employers as part of their pre-employment medical checks, ministry officials said Friday.

Color vision tests have been mandatory in line with the Industrial Safety and Health Law.

The ministry is seeking to abolish the tests since those who are found to be color blind usually have few problems in their work duties, and also because some employers limit their job vacancies without giving specific reasons.

The ministry will instruct employers who wish to eliminate color-blind applicants to elaborate on why they consider color-blind people should not be hired.

In addition, their explanations will be written in the ''job description'' section instead of the ''physical condition'' section in application forms, the officials said.

The style of the application forms will also be changed.

A ministry panel has said that gene-related data, such as infectious disease information, and color vision tests invite misunderstanding and prejudice which could lead to social discrimination.

At schools also, the number of color vision tests conducted on students has been gradually reduced since fiscal 1995.

The ministry will advise employers not to make the test mandatory unless the job, like that of pilots, absolutely requires normal vision.
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Publication:Japan Science Scan
Date:Jun 23, 2001
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