An advisory panel on gender equality to Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori urged the Japanese government to enact legislation that would end domestic violence on July 31st. The Council for Gender Equality labeled domestic violence a criminal act, warning in its report that there is “not a moment to lose” in halting violence in the home. Domestic violence has long been perceived in Japan as a personal issue rather than as a crime. Calling for tougher legislation and increased counseling, the Council denounced the reluctance of police and public institutions to intervene in cases of domestic violence. One in 21 women polled have said that that their husbands or partners committed life-threatening violence against them, according to a survey released by the Prime Minister’s Office in February.