Data on Special Support Education (Deaf) in Japan, 2008-2009

The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology published documents and data related to the Special Support Schools (Deaf) in Japan for the academic period of April, 2008 - March, 2009.


-The number of schools for the deaf: 99 (the previous academic year: 102)

*Currently there are one national school and one private school, and the rest are prefecture schools.

-The number of deaf children/students from preschool thorough advanced classes: 6, 427 (the previous year: 6,518)

-The number of teachers: 4, 776 (the previous year: 4,897)

-The number of staff: 1,726 (the previous year: 1,804)

-The number of deaf children attending the mainstream programs or special-needs classes, etc. : 29,860

Hearing student won best award in National High School Signed Speech Contest in Toky

Mori tells her dream in sign language

The 26th National High School Signed Speech Contest was held in Tokyo on August 29, sponsored by the Japanese Federation of the Deaf and The Asashi Shimbun (newspaper company) and the others.

The contest was a national event for the high school students using the sign language, and about 70 hearing students applied from across the country this year.

Ten students who had passed both the two-time preliminary contest made a speech in the sign language with the theme of "My dream to be realized" or "Something to be succeeded".

Kahiro Mori (17), a junior from Gunma Prefecture, won the best award. She was happy saying, "I want to tell my Deaf parents about this award".

In her speech, she says why she learns the gardening at the school is because she thinks if the communications through the flowers and the vegetables are able to remove the barrier between the Deaf and the hearing counterpart. She ardently talked about her dream with a bright voice and the smoothly-moving tips of her fingers.

Mori is the leader of the sign language club with other six students at the high school. She was pleased, saying that the more she learn welfare and caring the better she became prepared for the Deaf.

Mori says about her ambition, "Our goal of the sign language club is to visit the adult daycare center as often as possible".

At the opening ceremony, Her Highness Princess Kiko, sister-in-law of the Crown Prince, gave a speech in sign language.

Source in Japanese:

Hearing people learn sign language to communicate before national Deaf events in Izu City

Participants practice how to introduce themselves

The National Conference for Deaf Seniors will take place in Izu City, Shizuoka Prefecture on October 9-10, 2009. About 700 Deaf persons are expected to show up.

Also the National Deaf Seniors Gate ball Tournament will be held in the City.

Prior to these events, a sign language class for the beginners was opened in the city on August 26.

Eleven persons including the elementary school graders attended the class, and learnt how to greet and introduce oneself, etc. in the sign language.

City officials and a sign language circle called "Maple Friends Club" sponsored the class to offer the citizens the opportunity to become familiar with communications in sign language.

Deaf residents and the sign language interpreters served as the lecturer. The students introduced their family and their names each other, and learnt the finger spelling. They enjoyed themselves, doing a practice by exchanging greetings in sign language.
The class will be resumed on September 9.

Source in Japanese:

Deaf Japanese athletes to participate in Deaflympic Games in Taiwan

The member list for the delegation to represent Japan at the 21st Deaflympic Games, which will be held on September 5 - 15 in Taiwan, was announced as follows.

officials : 91 (63 men, 28 women)
athletes: 154 (88 men, 66 women)
245 in total

The athletes will compete for the following 12 sports items:

track and field
table tennis
beach volleyball (*)
soccer (*)
judo (*)
karate (*)

*The sign indicates an item newly recognized officially in this Deaflympic Games.

About 4,000 athletes from 81 countries and regions will compete in 19 items at the Games.

Deaf volunteers work in the disaster-stricken area in Yamaguchi

Deaf volunteers work
in the disaster-stricken area in Yamaguchi

One month has passed on August 21 after the heavy downpour hit Hofu City, Yamaguchi Prefecture. The natural disaster caused the loss of 17 lives.

The reconstruction activities by the prefecture administration and the volunteers are currently proceeded in the stricken area.

In the disaster area, the Deaf volunteer group has contributed to the cleaning of the houses buried under earth and sand from a mudslide and the flood. It is an unusual attempt that "vulnerable people" including Deaf persons work to support the reconstruction activities.

The group is called the Hofu City Disaster Measures Council for the Deaf, consisted of about 110 Deaf persons and members of the sign language circles. About 60 percent are Deaf, who established the organization in 2007 and have worked on the spread of the sign language expression at the disaster time, and the fire drill, etc.

This natural damage moved Deaf members to ask themselves if they could do something. One of the Deaf members (54) made the best use of his own experience in housing improvement, making up an activity plan. From July 28 through August 5, 106 people in total worked in the stricken area with the sign language interpreters.

They, putting on the best with the word "Deaf" on the back, helped five households by raking out the mud that accumulated on the Japanese mats and carrying out the furnishes and belongings.

Aged Deaf persons who were not able to do physical labor, also made the rice balls, etc., put them on the carrier of the bicycle, carried to the stricken area, and distributed them to the people.

The leader of the organization said, "We hope hearing people will understand that Deaf people can also volunteer".

An official of the Japan Council on Disability located in Tokyo said, "It is unusual that the group of persons with disabilities is active as a volunteer at the disaster on a nationwide scale. The persons with disabilities are often seen as needy people for help, but this case might show a new possibility".

Source in English:

Development of new GPS technology to enable Deaf alarm in 38 seconds

NTT, a Japanese company for telecommunications has developed GPS phone service for the Deaf which can alarm quickly to call the police.

The software shows a very specific image so that the communication between the deaf friends through a simple click be reported, and their local platforms immediately uploaded to the police.

For details, click the following English link:

Deaf Tokyo Barmaid Flirts With Pen, Calms Men in Crisis: Books

Rie Saito, a Deaf hostess working at one of the prestigious bars in Ginza, Tokyo, has written a book, titled “The Hostess With a Pen”.

Makiko Kitamura reports on her life, work, etc. Her review in English is on the following link:

Related links:

Video on political speeches to show with interpreting for the Deaf

A meeting to show the video on the speech of each political candidate running for the election of assembly members of the House of Representatives and the proportional representation will be held in Tokyo on August 29, 2009.

It aims to provide the Deaf and hard of hearing persons with accessibility to the spoken speeches aired on TV through interpreting, the magnetic loop, and the real-time captioning system.

Only interpreting for the proportion representative election of the House of Representatives and the House of Councilors, and videos that a political party prepared for the small electoral district of the House of Representatives election are available.

Moreover, it is an arbitrary choice of a political party whether to do these. As a result, the Deaf and hard of hearing persons are put to discrimination that they don't understand what these candidates are speaking.

There is a move to defend the right of Deaf people to vote.

Source in Japanese:
DEAF-NEWS (subscription)

Newly-styled "Interior Phone" as well functions fax machine for the Deaf

According to the press release dated August 15, Sharp Company will sell the new style telephone (white/black) on the market on September 15. It may cost about 300US$.

It contains a large-scale color liquid crystal and the touch panel which can be used as a digital photo frame, "Interior Phone" (JD-7C1CL/CW).

This machine installs seven-typed color liquid crystal with the touch panel in the main body of the cordless phone machine (main phone), and displays all necessary buttons on the liquid crystal screen.

Moreover, the telephone book with pictures which a friend's telephone number and photograph are registered beforehand is used by touching.

While no use, the slide in the photograph is displayed as a digital photo frame simply by inserting the memory card that preserves the photograph data. It can be used as an interior in the room.

In addition, the fax reception function is installed. The faxed message can be seen on the screen by touching to expand or reduce the size of message as well as operate the scroll on a large screen.

Source in Japanese:

Deaf man directs silent movie

Filming took place in Ueda City, Nagano Prefecture for two days in August. The director of the silent movie titled "The Ant And The Katydid" is Nobuhiro Odate, a Deaf man.

He won the best award for his work titled "Uro" (go by taking a roundabout way) at the 2006 Toronto International Deaf Film and Arts Festival.

The hero of the movie is about a deaf businessman who gets depressed bottom of despair. All the casters are Deaf.

Odate says, "I am trying to make the movie enjoyable for everyone, Deaf and hearing".

His filming at the location is on the following videos. (Japanese version)
(Ueda Cable Vision Corporation)

Hearing children learn how to communicate with Deaf persons

Hearing graders sing a song
with sign language

The Social Welfare Council, located in Kaita-cho, Hiroshima Prefecture, held the course for the elementary school graders at the town welfare center on August 19. It aimed to give them the opportunity to learn how to communicate with Deaf persons.

The course was attended by 23 hearing children who were 4th and through 6th graders in the town.

Nine members of the local sign language volunteer group, called "Shining", served as the lecturer, teaching communication modes including sign language and note taking, etc.

The children asked the members favorite food and sports with the sign language, and sang the nursery rhymes.

One of the fourth graders said, "I want to study sign language more, and to participate in the volunteer work".

Source in Japanese:

Volunteer for evaluation of real time captioning system at hearing schools

Tsukuba University of Technology, Mobile Softbank, Nonprofit Organization-Nagano Summarize Center, Gunma University, and the University of Tokyo announced on August 17 that they would recruite groups
willing to cooperate prior to the full-scale service, "Mobile Type Remote Capioning System" intended for students who are Deaf and hard of hearing.

The "Mobile Type Remote Capioning System" means when the students attend the class with a hearing lecturer at schools, what the speaker says is transcribed on PC screen real time with the help of two interpreters by using cellular phone from a remote place.

This time, the groups recruited will evaluate the system from the standpoint of an "information service provider" which uses the possibly alternative means, such as transcribed from spoken language to text messages.

Mobile Softbank will provide incorporated nonprofit organizations, public service corporations, and the social welfare organizations with the cellular phone and the machine parts such as Bluetooth microphones necessary for the project.

There will be a meeting for those who are interested to volunteer for the project at the Tokyo office of Mobile Softbank on September 4, 2009.

Source in English:,3800078151,20398378,00.htm

Communications system without text and voice invented to support the Deaf and foreigners

Pilot system, called "VUTE2009"
to support the foreigners and the Deaf for communication
(photo: /

NTT announced the launch of a pilot system, called "VUTE2009", which assists communications without texts and voice, to the public on August 18.

(figures: /

VUTE, "Visualized Universal Talking Environment", displays "animation pictogram" to make visual symbols "Pictogram", which shows information and gets attention by a simple picture sign animation in the portable terminal, etc.

By this way, the system will support communications of the visiting foreigners and the Deaf who have difficulties in understanding the spoken Japanese, etc.

The newly invented "VUTE2009" system can be used for emergency cases, such as the sudden illness, the accident, and the injury, etc. when one cannot call the emergency telephone number, 119, because of the language barrier.

(figure: /

Sentences corresponding to the content are made automatically when the choice of the appropriate one is made from among the pictogram displayed on the display of the terminal. It aims to assist communication that takes a place of the spoken language and text messages.

In the future the number of vocabularies of pictograms used for VUTE will be increased, and each pictogram will be improved for easy understanding.

Source in Japanese:

Former gold medalist for table tennis challenges first time in 8 years at Deaflympics in Taiwan


Masaki Umemura (35) of Hokkaido will participate in table tennis of the "Deaflympic Games" in Taipei this September.

When he was a third grader of elementary school, he started to work on table tennis in full scale. Influenced by his elder brother, his sister is also a worldwide player and was one of the best 16 players in the women's singles table tennis of the Athens Olympics.

Umemura participated both in the Deaflympics in Denmark in 1997 and Italy in 2001. He won a gold medal with the group by the doubles in Denmark and the championship by four items (singles, the doubles, mixed doubles, and the group) in Italy.

He did not participate in the Deaflympics held in Australia in 2005 from the sense of accomplishment at that time. However, the result of the Japanese delegation for table tennis was poor. The Hokkaido Federation of the Deaf and others requested him to participate in the upcoming Deaflymics. He decided to challenge again, for the first time in 8 years.

Umemura, who has practiced hard, enthusiastically says, "My physical condition is not as perfect as before. But I feel now that I am mentally complete to compete. I will get the gold medal by all means".

Source in Japanese:

Newly signed words invented to interpret speech of political candidates

Eiichi Takada, head of the Japanese Sign Language
and Training Center, introduces a new sign

The national election for the House of Representatives is scheduled for August 30, 2009 in Japan.

When the speech of a candidate from the electoral district was made in video, interpreting was provided. This time interpreting has been expanded to candidates from each proportion block who make a speech in the studio for broadcasting.

Therefore, the Japanese Sign Language and Training Center located in Kyoto City created a new sign language vocabulary for 16 spoken words which are assumed indispensable for the understanding of a recent social issue.

The research group in the center, comprised of 22 Deaf members and interpreters, on standardized signs to spread, has worked to create appropriate signs which have not been easy to make new ones.

Each signs for nine spoken words such as "Employment stop", "Ballistic missile", and "Pirate" were newly made, and seven spoken words such as "Floating crab cannery" were combined with signs that already exist.

Eiichi Takada, head of the center who is Deaf, says, "We hope the newly invented signs will help the Deaf community to understand what a political candidate speaks on TV before they vote".

Source in Japanese:

Deaf Japanese History: 1940's - 1950's

To reduce financial burden on families with deaf children, plans to award scholarships set forth, along with plans for a school lunch program and assistance for school supplies, etc.

JAD forced to be combined with Association of Administrators of Deaf and other organizations, renamed Foundation of Education and Welfare for the Deaf-Mute, due t o war control; publishes a newsletter, "Roa-no-Hikari" (The Light for the Deaf-Mute), related to education and welfare; disbanded two years later due to WWII wartime activities.

Japan surrenders, occupied by American force.

National association of teachers of the deaf formed.

- Basic School Law, School Education Law, and others enacted.

- Special census conducted on the deaf population and their actual situations.

- Meeting held at Ikaho Hot Springs in Gunma Prefecture to form organization of the deaf called Japanese Federation of the Deaf (JFD), holding national conference in Ikaho.

- Government ordinance issued on compulsory education.

- Term, "Mute," removed from the official names of schools across the nation.

- Newspaper for the deaf, "The Japanese Deaf News," published.

- JFD holds Board meeting and national conference in Kyoto first after WWII.

- Helen Keller revisits Japan and gives speeches.

- Pension for persons with disabilities raised.

- Law for Establishment of Rehabilitation for the Deaf and Welfare Law for Persons with Disabilities issued.

- New law regulates certification and licensing of teachers.

- JFD holds Board meeting in Kanazawa.

- Two-year-training program for teacher of deaf children starts at universities. extended to four-year program later.

- Dormitory of Okayama School for the Deaf burnt down and 16 deaf children die.

- JFD granted as incorporated organization by Ministry of Health and Welfare.

- Toshifumi Fujimoto elected as first JFD president.

- JFD holds first Board and representative meetings in Kyoto.

- First deaf handcrafts exhibit held in Kyoto with over 100 items.

- 2nd JFD national conference held in Tottori Prefecture with 500 participants.

- World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) formed in Rome, Italy.

- "The Deaf News" renamed to "The Silent News."

- JFD holds 3rd national conference in Tokyo with 2,000 participants.

- Deaf Center set up in Kumamoto Prefecture.

- Government ordinance issued to make junior high school education for the blind and deaf compulsory.

- 4th JFD national conference held in Beppu, Kumamoto Prefecture with 800 participants.

- WFD holds World Congress which Japan is unable to attend.

5th JDF national conference held in Odaru, Hokkaido.

- Deaf students admitted to colleges/universities.

- 6th JFD national conference held in Osaka with 2,500 participants.

- WFD holds 2nd World Congress in Yugoslavia.

- First national baseball games for the deaf held in Kyoto.

- Rehabilitation Institute for the Deaf opens in Kyoto Prefectural Welfare Center for Persons with Disabilities.

- "The Deaf World" published again as JFD's official publication.

- JFD Board meeting held in Sendai, Miyagi Prefecture reelecting Toshifumu Fujimoto as president.

- JFD holds special national conference in Tokyo with 800 participants to promote establishment of national rehabilitation center for the deaf.

- Establishment of national rehabilitation center for the deaf proposed at cabinet level, and construction of the center starts.

- JFD holds 7th national conference in Kochi Prefecture with 700 participants.

- Toshifumi Fujimoto awarded with high honor from Emperor Hirohito.

- Curriculum for blind and deaf students at elementary and junior high school levels outlined.

- National Rehabilitation Center for the Deaf opens.

- Employment Promotion Law for Persons with Disabilities proclaimed.

- Caravan campaigns throughout Japan to allow the Deaf to get driving license.

- 8th JFD national conference held in Tokyo with 2,700 participants.

- 3-year preschool program starts.

- Deaf students forms societies in Osaka and later in Tokyo in 1962 to enlighten public and college on the need for higher education.

- First 51 deaf persons complete courses at National Rehabilitation Center for the Deaf.

- National conference on education of deaf children held in Kyoto.

- Over 100 deaf persons killed or injured by typhoon.

- JFD holds 9th national conference in Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture with 500 participants, resolving to apply for WFD membership.

- Eiichi Takada of Kyoto passes civil service examination and becomes first deaf

- First deaf artists' works exhibited in Tokyo.

Deaf Japanese History: 1920's - 1930's

- JAD holds 3rd general assembly at Osaka School for the Blind and Deaf-Mute, and revises its statutes.

- First oral school, Nippon Oral School for the Deaf, opens in Tokyo.

JAD holds 4th general assembly at Nagoya School for the Blind and Deaf-Mute.

- JAD holds 5th general assembly at Kyoto School for the Deaf-Mute.

- Osaka City School for the Deaf-Mute opens.

- Kanto Great Earthquakes attack Tokyo and cities nearby and many deaf persons injured or killed.

- National Association of Education of the Deaf-Mute formed.

Tokyo Oral School for the Deaf starts a special class for hard of hearing children.

- JAD holds special general assembly in Tokyo.

- Ministry of Education issues a certificate for incorporation of the JAD.

- Kyoto School separated into two, respectively for the blind and the deaf.

- Incorporated JAD holds first general meeting at Kyoto School with 295 participants.

- First national sports games for the deaf held in Kyoto.

- Nippon Oral Preschool program starts.

Statue encourages enrollment of school-aged children, applying to schools for the deaf.

JAD holds 3rd general meeting in Osaka.

Ministry of Education publishes Japanese language textbooks for the blind and deaf-mute respectively.

- Japanese manual fingerspelling invented by Gensuke Osone, teacher at Osaka City School for the Deaf.

- "Deaf Monthly" published.

Protection Act enacts, defining areas of application of the law according to degree of disability.

- By the year elementary schools in Tokyo has started classes for the hard of hearing.

- Typhoon destroys buildings of Osaka City School for the Deaf.

- By the year, oral method taken root, introduced in most of schools for the deaf.

- "Deaf Almanac" published.

Ministry of Education conducts survey on school-aged deaf children.

- Commission on education forms and reports on schools for the deaf, in pushing for compulsory education.

- Helen Keller visits Japan.

National track and fields meet for the deaf-mute held in Kyoto.

JAD memberships increased to 1816.

Deaf Japanese History: 1900's - 1910's

Special classes set up in elementary schools in two prefectures, but soon closed.

Tokyo Institute for the Blind and Deaf-Mute starts teacher training program, offering deaf students who wish to study further.

First national convention of the deaf-mute held in Tokyo, leading to form national organization of the deaf-mute.

First national conference on education held at Tokyo School for the Blind and Deaf-Mute; national association of teachers of the blind and deaf-mute formed.

Lecture meeting held in Tokyo on education of the blind and deaf-mute, first conference for the deaf.

Tokyo Institute for the Blind and Deaf-Mute starts vocational courses in such areas as art, crafts, and sewing, as part of teacher training program for deaf students having completed high school.

Alumni of Tokyo School for the Deaf-Mute forms Tokyo Deaf Club, publishing official newsletter, "Silent World."

Deaf teachers, who also alumni from Kyoto, Osaka and Tokyo, forms national association of the deaf named Japanese Association of the Deaf (JAD); committee set up in Tokyo to study possibilities for establishment of national organization of the deaf-mute by Toshifumi Fujimoto's efforts; official meeting of the committee held, and headquarters set up with by-laws; headquarters publishes its official newspaper, 6th issue of "Silent World".

- JAD holds first general assembly at Kyoto School for the Deaf-Mute.

- Viscount Yozo Yamao elected first JAD president and Shimpachi Konishi first chairman.

- JAD branches formed in Tokyo, Osaka and other cities.

JAD holds 2nd general assembly in Tokyo.

Viscount Yozo Yamao dies and his son, Saburo, recommended as his successor.

Deaf Japanese History: 1800's

Education of the blind and deaf in western countries first reported in Japan.

- Yozo Yamao, government official, submits to Cabinet petition for establishment of school for both deaf and blind children.

- Education system starts, encouraging disabled children to receive education.

- Public Relief Act first enacted, defining disabled persons as incompetent and dependent.

1875- Education for the blind and deaf starts in Kyoto; Denbei Kumagi, city leader, consults Furukawa Tashiro about teaching the deaf child of a neighbor; Furukawa becomes first hearing teacher of blind and deaf children.

- First school for the blind and deaf opens in Kyoto; 17 blind and deaf-mute children enrolled.

- School Law enacted.

- Schools for the blind and deaf-mute assumed to be various institutions in a category.

Institution for the blind and deaf-mute opens in Osaka, but closed the next year.

- Dr. Faulds, English missionary, attempts to set up school in Tokyo, and Nakamura Masanao and high ranking government officials join his effort.

- Tokyo Institution for the Blind admits deaf-mute children, renamed to Tokyo Institution for the Blind and Deaf-Mute in 1883.

Tokyo Institution for the Blind and Deaf-Mute funded by government.

- Elementary School Law issued.

- Compulsory education system established, yet the blind and deaf-mute excluded.

Kyoto Institution placed under Kyoto city due to financial burden.

Imperial rescript on education proclaimed.

- Criminal Procedure Code and the Civil Procedure Code enact, describing official status of sign language interpreting in legal proceedings.

- First association of the deaf set up by alumni in Tokyo, "Tokyo Alumni Association for the Blind and Deaf-Mute."

Alexander Graham Bell visits Japan and lectures on education of the deaf-mute.

Annual National Discussion Meeting on Deaf Education to be held in Miyagi Prefecture in August

The 21st National Discussion Meeting on Deaf Education will be held by the Future Deaf Education Council mainly at Tohoku Social Welfare University in Sendai City, Miyagi Prefecture on August 22-23, 2009.

Tentative Program:
-Keynote speech by Hiroshi Tamon, Deaf lawyer, titled "The Influence of the United Nations Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities on Deaf Education in Japan"

・Panel discussion by Eiichi Takada (head of the Japanese Sign Language
Research and Training Center), Akihiro Yonaiyama (Deaf actor and JSL instructor), Yoshiko Nasu (Deaf Mother), and Takaaki Arai (assistant professor of Tsukuba University of Technology )

Sessions, programs for Deaf students from elementary to high school
level, and other activities are also scheduled.

Source in Japanese:
DEAF NEWS (subscription)

Deaf Karate player to compete at National Sports Meet and Deaflympics

Kojima (center) and Ito (right)
at the Karate championships

The 64th National Sports Meet will take place in Niigata Prefecture on September 26 - October 6, 2009. Tadahiro Kojima (23) of Okazai City, a Deaf company employee, will compete at the Karate game general boy class arms formation (middle weight class) section.

Kojima visited the Karate gym near his home when he was an elementary school sixth grader and started the Karate. He has worked hard all through the way and his efforts are paid.

He graduated from the Aichi Prefecture Okazaki School for the Deaf and studied the martial arts in the physical education department of the International Budo (martial arts) Institute in Chiba Prefecture.

After he graduated, he has practiced the Karate hard in the gym, while working as a clerk in Brother Industries, Ltd. in Okazaki.

He won the first place at the Aichi Prefecture Karate Championships that was held as a preliminary contest of the annual National Sports Games in April this year, which he was selected to compete.

Katsuji Ito (48), the chairman responsible for intensive training at the Aichi Prefecture Karate League, said, "Kojima is a good player responsive to the reaction and understanding, and also is excellent in the ability to correct the problem".

Kojima said, "Because the National Sports Games was a big event at which I have aimed for a long time, I want to win the championship".

Kojima achieved the 4th straight victory in the Deaf session of the All-Japan Karate championships for persons with disabilities, and has been selected to participate in the 21st Summer Deaflympic Games in Taipei City, Taiwan on September 5-15, 2009.

Source in Japanese:

Group hitchhikes for 750 kilos from Kobe to Tokyo to promote understanding of Deaf needs

The Independence Living Center in Hyogo Prefecture, called "Mainstream Society", planned that a group hitchhike about 750 kilos from Kobe to Tokyo. They would sleep outside at night or stay at some one's home.

It was planned by Ibuki Tanaka (24), a Deaf staff member of the society. He says, "We want to meet a lot of people to let their prejudge that the Deaf cannot communicate removed. And also we want all the participants, Deaf or hearing, share happy memories of the summer".

The purpose of the trip is to promote understanding to the problems widely so that the Deaf who heavily rely on sign language and note taking, etc. may participate positively in the society.

The group will leave Kobe on August 10, and visits Osaka City Office and Kyoto City Office, etc. on foot. And then, they continue hitchhiking with the aim at Tokyo, where they will arrive on August 28.

On the way to Tokyo, the volunteers who assist the conversation also join. Futsal with hearing people who put on the earplug, and a "party", etc. that use the whiteboard are also planned.

Moreover, the group turns round the administrative bodies and the schools for the Deaf in various places, and investigate the actual condition of service to the Deaf provided by each municipality.

The Disability Independence Support Law requires the municipality to provide services to support the Deaf individual. The standard of such services as interpreting and note taking provided by varies in different municipalities.

Therefore, the goal of hitchhiking is to visit the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare to make the request based on the result of the survey obtained through the activity, and to correct the local service differences, etc.

Source in English:

Cellular phone strap specially made for the Deaf

Fujisawa City in Kanagawa Prefecture, next to Tokyo, has made 1000 pieces in total of the cellular phone strap to be used by the Deaf in case of emergency. The city plans to start a free distribution to the Deaf residents from August 6 2009.

On the black strap, phrases are printed in white and red respectively: "I can neither hear nor speak", "Please call the emergency number 119 for me".

A small whistle is attached to the strap so that a hearing person in surroundings may notice in the emergency, too.

Such a kind of strap made for Deaf persons is the first in the prefecture according to Fujisawa city officials. There are about 900 Deaf and hard of hearing persons living in the city with the eligibility document.

Yasunori Sakurai, president of the Fujisawa City Association of the Deaf, says, "We are delighted that all the members are allowed to get the Deaf strap. We will make use of it".

Source in Japanese:

Books on Deaf culture by Carol Padden and Tom Humphries translated into Japanese

Soya and Ami Mori also have translated the book titled "Deaf in America: Voices from a Culture" (Harvard University Press, 1988) by Carol Padden and Tom Humphries into Japanese a few years ago.

This time again, they translated the book, titled "Inside Deaf Culture" (Harvard University Press, 2005) into Japanese.

The Japanese version, published by Akashi Book, Inc, is now on sale in Japan.

Soya Mori is a well-known Deaf specialist on economics with focus on the eastsouthern Asia and JSL linguist. Ami, his wife, is also Deaf.

Deaf women empowerment workshop to be held in Tokyo in September

A workshop to empower Deaf women will be held on Saturday, September 19, 2009, 13:30-16:30 in Tokyo, sponsored by the Lifestyles of Deaf Women.

The Deaf women with degrees from colleges/universities who are employed would experience the barrier in communications at various places such as the office, the home, and the region, etc.

To the majority of the who often swallow their thoughts or want to avoid a trouble with hearing persons in the surroundings, it is noteasy to attempt self-realization.

It may be caused by the assumption that the Deaf women are confronted with the double handicap in a general society, "deafness" and "being a female."

They need a place where they can be empowered to live assertively.

Tentative program:
- Basis of assertiveness
- The pattern of your own communications.
- Points of assertive communications

This workshop is only for Deaf women aged from twenties to forties (student acceptable) .

*Interpreting will be provided.

Source in Japanese:
DEAF-NEWS (subscription)