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Becoming a police officer in Japan

Mylynes

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Hi there. I am from the USA and looking to move to Japan in around a year or so. I was wondering. Are foreigners allowed to become police officers in Japan? If so what are the requirements? What kind of training and such needs to be done in order to work as a policeman in Japan. More specifically in Tokyo.
 

epigene

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Not only that, you must be a Japanese national and have high school education or higher in the Japanese school system, in addition to other requirements, depending on applicant category, regarding skills in martial arts, technology, political affiliation, etc.
 

Mylynes

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I received some training and spent some time in the us navy. I have had some college but no degree. I have had only a small amount of martial arts training. I'm also a bit of a geek and i'm pretty good with programming. Also my japanese is not that great yet but like other things I am a very fast learner and I am willing to work on it. I originally wanted to get into police work here. I am still looking at doing that if it would help to become a police officer in japan. Most of my life I have dreamed of living in japan for many reasons and I think I would make a good cop. In the very least I will definately be visiting japan at some point.

So even if it is hard to do or would take a long time I am willing to put forth the time and effort. So is it possible? And if so about how difficult would it be?
 

undrentide

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As epigene mentioned, you must be a Japanese national to be come a police officer in Japan.
(To obtain Japanese citizenship is really a very long way to go...)
 

Emoni

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Sounds like one heck of a long road if you want to be a police officer in Japan but good luck if you decide to do it.

I recommend for practice of your upcoming profession in Japan as a police officer, that while you are still in the U.S. you patrol the street on foot around shopping centers and suburbs and stop "foreign looking" people to see if they have their visa paper work or green card on them, and if you see any people riding bikes stop them to see if they sent in the registration warranty on their bicycles

Ganbatte!👍
 

Mylynes

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Was researching online based on the information I received here. Does this sound right?
"Foreigners, who have resided in Japan for at least five consecutive years (less if married to a Japanese national), have shown good conduct, have never plotted against the Japanese government, have sufficient assets or ability to make an independent living and are willing to renounce any other citizenship held, can be granted Japanese citizenship."

I also noticed that it looks hard to stay in japan for 5 years unless I manage to get a working visa and get it extended while there.

"A university degree or considerable professional experience in the applicable field is required to qualify for a working visa. Most types of working visas also require you to have a prospective employer as a sponsor. Residence permission is usually granted in periods of one or three years and is extendable."

So if I could manage to find a normal job in japan and support myself long enough then it would become possible to work as a cop? 5 years would be more than enough time for me to get good with the language and I would also have more than enough time to get some martial arts training done.
 

epigene

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Sounds like one heck of a long road if you want to be a police officer in Japan but good luck if you decide to do it.

I recommend for practice of your upcoming profession in Japan as a police officer, that while you are still in the U.S. you patrol the street on foot around shopping centers and suburbs and stop "foreign looking" people to see if they have their visa paper work or green card on them, and if you see any people riding bikes stop them to see if they sent in the registration warranty on their bicycles

Ganbatte!👍
Hmm... My husband and I recently realized that the police target people (particularly men) riding old bikes. My husband (100% native Japanese born and raised in Japan) rides a 20-year-old bike (in perfect shape) and is stopped every so often in our neighborhood. When he explains that he's been riding it for 20 years, the officers are impressed. They've told him that it is common these days for people to discard bikes after less than 5 years. So, they target people on old-looking ones, because the chances are high that they've stolen the bikes from somewhere and are cruising around to find potential burglary targets.

I might add also that he's been stopped by the same officers a couple of times! Boy was he pissed!!

So, keep your bikes looking brand-new!! :giggle:
 

Mylynes

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Sounds like one heck of a long road if you want to be a police officer in Japan but good luck if you decide to do it.
I recommend for practice of your upcoming profession in Japan as a police officer, that while you are still in the U.S. you patrol the street on foot around shopping centers and suburbs and stop "foreign looking" people to see if they have their visa paper work or green card on them, and if you see any people riding bikes stop them to see if they sent in the registration warranty on their bicycles
Ganbatte!👍
I think I may end up becoming a cop here in the us while I work on learning how to speak and write better. It would also give me a chance to save enough money to be able to move to and find work in japan.

I think that I am also going to have to do some more schooling just to get a work visa x.x
This sounds tough but fun. ^_^
 
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undrentide

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http://www.e-tekisei.com/~kaisetsu/shinro/kaisetu/37.html
警察官になるには? (How to become a Police Officer)

You have to pass either the examination for first-class officer (exam to become the national government employee), or the prefectural government's employment examinations for police officers.
In case of the latter, once you pass the exam, you'll have to go to police school.

Not that I want to discourage you, but to take the above exam, you'll need to be proficient in Japanese language so that you can understand the webpage above quoted....
:emoji_blush:
 

Mylynes

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xxxxxxxx(had to erase that to post this)
警察官になるには? (How to become a Police Officer)
You have to pass either the examination for first-class officer (exam to become the national government employee), or the prefectural government's employment examinations for police officers.
In case of the latter, once you pass the exam, you'll have to go to police school.
Not that I want to discourage you, but to take the above exam, you'll need to be proficient in Japanese language so that you can understand the webpage above quoted....
:emoji_blush:
Thank you very much for the info. I realize it will not be an easy task but I am only 20 years old so I have a few long years to train before moving to japan. And then a few more long years of training after that. Combined with being a fast learner and my level of dedication I believe I have more than enough time to reach my goals. The main reason I am here is because I like to have things planned very far in advance. Starting tonight I will begin both my physical and mental training and one day if all goes as planned i'll be able get there. ^_^
Thank you again for the information. I really like this forum so I think i'll be sticking around here as well as some other places online trying to learn as much as I can.
 

Glenski

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You say you will do anything it takes ("I have a few long years to train before moving to japan"), yet your first post says you want to move here in only 12 months. Huh?

Ramen and shogi are nice, but if you want to be a police officer (something you have not explained why), it's going to take more than an interest in hobbies and food to convince immigration.
 

nice gaijin

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I don't mean to be dismissive, BUT...

You want to become a police officer in Japan for some unexplained reason, yet you are so ridiculously far from achieving ANY of the minimum requirements for the job.
Are you a Japan national? No
Did you go through The Japanese education system? No
Do you even speak, read or write Japanese? No
Do you meet any of the minimum requirements for even getting a visa to live in Japan, let alone citizenship?! No

The people above are being a little too kind, perhaps out of fear of being admonished. At this point, you might as well be planning for your next life. There's no guarantee that even after all the years spent just trying to make yourself eligible you'd even be accepted into the academy, or pass through the program, or get an appointment, or even like your job when you get stuffed into a tiny koban in tottori.

Go and visit and enjoy yourself. You'll probably see a lot of Japanese police as they stop you and harrass you for looking suspicious. Study Japanese if you want, that's at least a reasonable goal. It helps when your goals have a solid foundation in reality. You've never been to Japan, yet want to denounce your citizenship to work and live there? Whose koolaid have you been drinking?
 

Mike Cash

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Go and visit and enjoy yourself. You'll probably see a lot of Japanese police as they stop you and harrass you for looking suspicious.
I realize that it is the popular thing to do, but I will not sit silently while you unfairly malign the entirety of the Japanese police force like that. Either substantiate your contention, modify it to reflect reality, or withdraw it entirely.
 

nice gaijin

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you're right, it was too sweeping a generalization. I should have specified that he'll probably be harrassed only if engaged in suspicious activities, like riding a bike.
 

Emoni

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I realize that it is the popular thing to do, but I will not sit silently while you unfairly malign the entirety of the Japanese police force like that. Either substantiate your contention, modify it to reflect reality, or withdraw it entirely.
NiceGaijin's comment was hardly out of line or inaccurate. Did an officer give you a winning lotto ticket lately or something?

Besides help for getting directions, the only contact with police I've had otherwise is being harassed by them for what is considered "Racial profiling" in the U.S. Obviously they do other activities, but in regards to contact with foreigners who are not doing anything illegal this is the primary contact you have with them... and it gets DAMN old fast being treated like a criminal.

I also know for a fact that NG knows what he is talking about on the latest comment.
 

Mylynes

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You say you will do anything it takes ("I have a few long years to train before moving to japan"), yet your first post says you want to move here in only 12 months. Huh?

Ramen and shogi are nice, but if you want to be a police officer (something you have not explained why), it's going to take more than an interest in hobbies and food to convince immigration.
Sorry for the misunderstanding. While my long term goal is to find a job and take permanent residence in japan I also have another goal wich is to visit in about a year. I just started working on shogi because I am a huge fan of strategy and the ramen.. I already eat ramen at least twice a day.

And honestly I do have my own reasons why I would like to work as a police officer but I would rather not post them here on a public forum.
 

Mylynes

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I don't mean to be dismissive, BUT...
You want to become a police officer in Japan for some unexplained reason, yet you are so ridiculously far from achieving ANY of the minimum requirements for the job.
Are you a Japan national? No
Did you go through The Japanese education system? No
Do you even speak, read or write Japanese? No
Do you meet any of the minimum requirements for even getting a visa to live in Japan, let alone citizenship?! No
The people above are being a little too kind, perhaps out of fear of being admonished. At this point, you might as well be planning for your next life. There's no guarantee that even after all the years spent just trying to make yourself eligible you'd even be accepted into the academy, or pass through the program, or get an appointment, or even like your job when you get stuffed into a tiny koban in tottori.
Go and visit and enjoy yourself. You'll probably see a lot of Japanese police as they stop you and harrass you for looking suspicious. Study Japanese if you want, that's at least a reasonable goal. It helps when your goals have a solid foundation in reality. You've never been to Japan, yet want to denounce your citizenship to work and live there? Whose koolaid have you been drinking?
I believe I mentioned that I enjoy planning far ahead. Yes I am a bit crazy. I have ocd and a very stratecial mindset and it does not take me very long to learn new things. As far as my meeting the requirements go I do have a long way to go which is why I am attempting to plan ahead. I am also not starting completely from scratch either.
Are you a Japan national? But from what I have been researching it is not impossible to do. And the way I do things I believe I would be able to get it done.
Did you go through The Japanese education system? No but if studying in japanese schools is a requirement then I will find a way to get it done.
Do you even speak, read or write Japanese? Yes, just no where near as well as I need to yet. But like other things.. I have allowed enough time to work on it. I'm currently teaching myself the basics and plan on taking classes at the college I plan on going to.
Do you meet any of the minimum requirements for even getting a visa to live in Japan, let alone citizenship?! I may not currently have a degree but I do have some college and I have most of my basic studies out of the way. It would not take me very long at all to get the requirements for getting a work visa.
I also have skills. I spent some time in the us navy and I also received some special training from ex cia members. I'm not going into specifics about any of the training but I was always one of the few to not only excell but enjoy the harsh training. I am the type of person who thrives off of pushing myself and challenging myself. So all of the work to end up getting to japan and working in japan and maybe one day being a part of the police. It's not work to me. It is my blood. It it what keeps me alive.
 

Emoni

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So all of the work to end up getting to japan and working in japan and maybe one day being a part of the police. It's not work to me. It is my blood. It it what keeps me alive.
Yea... you better go visit or start looking into a lot more things, not to mention a lot of self reflection.
 

Emoni

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I'm not saying to give up everything, I'm simply recommending that you think very hard about what exactly you want. Nice Gaijin simply made the points very clear that everyone else (including myself) were already thinking of.

Take it one step at a time. You don't even know where the road you are going is taking you.

First focus on your Japanese language, college degree, and making an educational trip to Japan (maybe even study abroad). THEN you can start thinking about what you want to do, and more importantly, why.
 

Mylynes

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I'm not saying to give up everything, I'm simply recommending that you think very hard about what exactly you want. Nice Gaijin simply made the points very clear that everyone else (including myself) were already thinking of.
Take it one step at a time. You don't even know where the road you are going is taking you.
First focus on your Japanese language, college degree, and making an educational trip to Japan (maybe even study abroad). THEN you can start thinking about what you want to do, and more importantly, why.
Thank you for the information. And although I do plan things out too far ahead I do give most of my focus to the individual steps along the way. I also look at more than just 1 possible destination. The reason I look so far ahead is so I know my options when I do get to that point. It also helps to work with smaller goals if you feel as though it is getting you somewhere.

Again thanks to everyone for the information given. ^_^
 

Mike Cash

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What you propose to do is a logistical and practical impossibility. You can try to come and live in Japan, or you can seek a career in law enforcement. Choose one. You don't get both.

I sit here knowing full well from past experience that attempting to talk plain common facts to anyone delusional enough to imagine before ever having set foot in the country (and without any of the necessary qualifications in hand) that he is going to come here and live forever-n-ever-n-ever is the online equivalent of vigorously smashing my forehead repeatedly against a brick wall....but I do it anyway.

You're going to have to get a college degree.

You're going to have to learn reading, writing, listening, and speaking the Japanese language to a full native ability.

You're going to have to obtain some sort of unrelated employment to get a work visa to come here.

You're going to have to put in 5~10 years before you can even think about applying for citizenship.

You're going to have to wait perhaps a year or two for the Ministry of Justice to render a decision.

And you're going to have to do it all before you turn THIRTY, which is the cut-off age for taking the exam to become a policeman here anyway.
 

Frontman

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The two basic requirements necessary to obtain a work visa are 1, a 4 year or higher degree from an accredited university (many "online universities" don't qualify), 2, three or more years experience in a "professional" field. The number of professional fields is small, and even if being a geek were a profession, there are already millions of geeks here. This three or more years experience must be consecutive, and verified with tax payments, pay stubs, or employment contracts.
After residing in Japan for 5 consecutive years you are eligible to "apply" for Japanese citizenship. Applying is one thing, having citizenship granted is another. Anyone remember the British woman (Sayuri?) who became Japan's first foreign geisha? 2 college degrees (one being a PHD from Oxford) and more than 10 years in Japan were not enough for her to be approved for citizenship.
And, lastly, why would you want to be a police officer? Especially in Japan? Does a career in giving directions, picking up passed out salarymen, and taking reports for stolen umbrellas sound exciting to you? Policemen like to pick on foreigners mainly because they have nothing better to do.
Police in Japan aren't paid very well relative to what they make in many parts of America. You would make more money teaching at an English conversation school 25 hours a week. And, never forget that police departments and other bureaucracies are extremely political. As a foreigner, what do you think the odds would be against your being promoted within the department?
Another thing to note. Even if you get Japanese citizenship and a job as a police officer, you will still be considered a foreigner. And that's what you'll be known as throughout your career, "that foreign policeman". You should at least consider getting a job where being a foreigner is an asset, and not a liability.
 

Emoni

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I remember the story about that woman. It made some very scathing points about Japan's citizenship set up...

Simply put, if you actually manage to become a police officer in Japan, it will be a freak'n miracle... that won't really have any reward to it. The system is set up against you, as Japan really doesn't WANT foreign police officers nor see a need for them. If they did the system would be very different, and so would many others.
 

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