While Hinkon o nakusu tame no kuia [queer] no kai (HinQ) primarily uses the Japanese language (the most complicated version, in particular, where 2 sets of alphabets & numerous Chinese characters are used), we also provide as much information in hiragana and English as possible. This is part of the group’s efforts to be accessible for diverse populations that include non-speakers of Japanese, based on its accessibility principle that was agreed upon at its first meeting.
Resources available in English:
Hinkon o nakusu tame no queer no kai (HinQ) is a Gunma/Tochigi/Saitama/Ibaraki-based queer group launched on April 21, 2013 in order to “fight the social structures that drive certain people into poverty” and “make better the lives of the economically disadvantaged,” based on the philosophy that queer issues and the issues of poverty cannot be separated but are two sets of social problems that overlap with each other.
The reason why we use the term “queer” instead of “LGBT” is that we recognize the need and importance of acknowledging the existence of queers who are not represented fully or at all in the mainstream “LGBT” framework that is becoming more and more closely tied to and incorporated into market mechanisms.
HinQ recognizes that “poverty” is not a given, but a socially constructed situation that is unjustly created and maintained and labeled as “poverty.” We recognize that in order to “end poverty,” we need to not only strive to make better the lives of the economically disadvantaged but also fight the social structures that create and maintain “poverty,” and undermine the advantages of those who benefit from such social structures. We also recognize the impossibility of explaining the complex, rich lives of those in “poverty” by only talking about their poverty, and refuse the idea that such people’s lives are only filled with difficulties. In this understanding, HinQ not only aims to shed light on the diversity within the queer community but also on the diverse human experiences of “poverty.”
Based on such understandings, HinQ does not believe in creating “support for poor LGBT individuals.” Instead, we value the humble act of listening to and paying close attention to the diversities of sexuality and sexual lives, of genders and gender experiences, and of poverty and lives affected by it, as well as to the complex overlaps and intersections. We make it our objective to create and practice activities that value both practical, specific approaches and ideological, critical interventions. In so doing, we also question the binary of the supporting/helping and the supported/helped; instead, we aim at creating solidarity and coalition among those who face the difficulties based on sexuality, gender, and poverty.
HinQ will create and practice its activities in order to achieve the following objectives. This list is incomplete and will be amended as needed.
Information sharing and Education
- Hold study sessions and events for thinking about poverty and queer issues as two sets of problems that overlap each other,
- Publish and distribute booklets, zines, etc. that deal with both poverty and queer issues, and
- Create queer spaces for discussing the issues and experiences of poverty.
- Approach local groups and governments for discussing medical issues, employment issues, and support environments.
- In working with other groups, participate in support activities for the economically disadvantaged.
- Practice case-by-case support activities as needed.