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May 26, 2009

New measures to protect university students from cults

cult.jpeg45 universities around Japan have begun exchanging information on cults and sharing ideas on how to protect students. University freshmen have been particularly vulnerable. They have been targeted through clubs or by being asking to participate in seminars or surveys. Once lured into a cult they are often not permitted to socialize with other students.

According to a report in the Mainichi Shimbun: 'At Okayama University's entrance exams this spring, a group claiming to offer instructions on choosing courses after acceptance to the school was found distributing fliers to exam takers. The school subsequently made the decision to issue 1,000 arm bands for members of school sanctioned clubs and groups to wear so that new students would be able to distinguish them from non-legitimate organizations. Other efforts by universities include that by Chiba University, which has set up a cult consultation office to systematize counter-cult measures. Still other schools inform parents of students whose involvement with cults has been discovered, and others rescind official school approval of groups involved in cult-like activities.'

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