Category Archives: other

Obituary: Dr. Yerker Andersson, WFD Honorary President

Dr. Yerker Andersson, Honorary President of World Federation of the Deaf, passed away on July 18th 2016, in Frederick, Maryland, United States. Dr. Andersson served two terms of WFD Vice President (1975-1983) and three terms of the WFD presidency (1983-1995), devoting himself to networking deaf associations around the globe to expand their participation to WFD, as well as to protecting human rights of the deaf persons through international organizations including the United Nations (UN). He is the first deaf person addressing in the UN General Assembly in 1992. We, Japanese Federation of the Deaf, send our deepest deference to his commitment and profound condolences to his loss.

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Showa University Hospital to be the First Japanese University Hospital to Open an Out-patient Clinic for the Deaf

from 1 February 2007 Issue of Japanese Deaf News, JFD’s monthly newspaper:

Showa University Hospital (Shinagawa, Tokyo) will start the “Out-patient clinic for the Deaf” from March 3, 2007. This initiative is the first of its kind in Japan to be undertaken by a university hospital.

The concept of this clinic is to offer “out-patient clinic services with special consideration for persons with hearing disabilities”. It starts with any disorder within the department of internal medicine. At the moment, the clinic opens every Saturday mornings of odd weeks with appointments. Patients can choose means of information access such as sign language interpretation and written communication at the time of making appointments.

Varied assistive devices, which were developed by Dr. Eikoh Takahashi, Assistant Professor of Department of Public Health, Showa University, will be available at the clinic. Dr. Takahashi is the writer of the “Let’s Go to Hospital” column and the respondent of the Q&A Section of the Japanese Deaf News.

Moreover, Ms Atuko Kurakata, President of the Tokyo Federation of the Deaf, and the first Deaf pharmacist in Japan, Ms Kumi Hayase are included on the external advisory board.

Details are available on the web site of the Showa University Hospital at:

New Nursing Care Facilities to Ensure A Happy Future for Aged Deaf

from 1 April 2006 Issue of Japanese Deaf News, JFD’s monthly newspaper:

“Nanafuku-en” Opened in April in Saitama

“Awaji Fukuro no Sato” Opened in Hyogo

Nanafuku-en (Moroyama City, Saitama Prefecture)

On April 1, two new nursing homes for the aged persons with hearing and speaking disabilities were opened in Saitama and Hyogo Prefectures. Both provide private bedrooms to all residents and are divided into blocks for living together in small group units. The facilities were realized as a result of persevering fund-raising efforts by the Deaf and hearing supporters.

Private Bedrooms and Group Units

The nursing home for the aged called “Nanafuku-en” is located in Moroyama City in Saitama Prefecture. It is a 2-storied building with a total floor space of about 3150 m2 built on a 5600m2 plot of land.

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The 29th Deaf Information Center in Japan Opened in Hyogo

from June 2005 Issue of Japanese Deaf News, JFD’s monthly newspaper:

The First Joint Operation Between a Prefecture and City
1000 People Gather For Opening Ceremony

Tape cutting by (from left), President Kisaburo Suma, Deputy Mayor Hideo
Kajimoto, Governor Toshizo Ido, Prefectural Assembly Member Ryosuke
Hara, and City Assembly Member Kenzo Tanaka

On May 9th, “Hyogo Prefectural Center for the Deaf”, the 29th information service facility for the persons with hearing disabilities throughout Japan was opened. Roughly 1000 people gathered at the second floor of the Nada Citizens’ Center in Kobe for the opening ceremony and festivities. Many expressed high hopes in their opening remarks for this unprecedented joint project between prefecture and city.

The Center fulfills the following functions:

  • to support self-reliance and social participation of the Deaf
  • to provide information in times of emergencies or disasters
  • to gather and to provide information, consultation and training

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Avian Influenza (Bird Flu) Influences Business Run by Deaf Poultry Breeder

from April 2004 Issue of Japanese Deaf News, JFD’s monthly newspaper:

Mr. Iwabayashi sterilizing his chicken house

Ever since a poultry farm in Tamba, Kyoto was infected by the bird flu in February, business has been difficult for surrounding poultry breeders, including Mr. Kazuo Iwabayashi (age 54), a Deaf poultry breeder operating a small business in this area.

On Feb. 28th, the government decided to prohibit the shipment of eggs or poultry meat from all farms located within 30km from the infected poultry meat processing company. Mr. Iwabayashi’s farm was located within this area. On March 2nd, the restricted area was reduced to farms within 5km from the infected company, and Mr. Iwabayashi was able to resume shipment of his products. However, during the 4-day ban, a total of 20,000 eggs were withheld from shipment.

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Lectures by International Sign Interpreter Bill Moody – “Is International Sign a Language?”

from March 2004 Issue of Japanese Deaf News, JFD’s monthly newspaper:

Current Situation and Outlook

Bill Moody giving an impressive presentation on International Sign

International Sign interpreter Bill Moody gave lectures at a meeting organized by the International Committee of the Japanese Federation of the Deaf on February 7th and also at the 4th Sigh Language Research Seminar held by the Japan Institute for Sign Language Studies (JSLS) on the 8th.

Both lectures took place in Creo Osaka East in Osaka City and each was attended by roughly 90 people including the members of JSLS.

Moody talked about the activities in the late 1970’s France to promote awareness on Sign Language and about the contents of ASL interpreter training courses in the US.

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Peace Message Delivered in Sign Language…

from September 2003 Issue of Japanese Deaf News, JFD’s monthly newspaper:

…by A Deaf Survivor at the A-Bomb Memorial Peace Ceremony in Nagasaki

Ms. Eiko Yamazaki delivering her
“Peace Message” in Sign Language
(Photo provided by the Nagasaki News)

“My responsibility as a survivor of the atomic-bombing, is to continue to speak on behalf of the many Deaf hibakusha who died… to continue to speak about all the things that I saw and felt.”

On August 9, at the 58th Peace Ceremony in Nagasaki in Memory of the Victims of the Atomic Bomb, a Deaf lady, Ms. Eiko Yamazaki, 76, represented the surviving A-bomb victims and delivered her “Peace Message” in sign language. Ms. Yamazaki used her hands and body eloquently and succeeded in conveying the full impact of her experiences and importance of her message. Her Peace Message in sign language touched the hearts of the participants and many looked on with tears in their eyes.

The appointment of a Deaf person to deliver the Peace Message on behalf of the surviving A-bomb victims was the result of persevering peace activities conducted by the Nagasaki Association of the Deaf and the Nagasaki Division of the National Study Association for Sign Language Interpretation. Such endeavors were recognized by other hibakusha groups and led to the realization of Ms. Yamazaki’s Peace Message.

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Four Disability Organizations Join Hands in Protest

from March 2003 Issue of Japanese Deaf News, JFD’s monthly newspaper:

Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare Withdraws Its Plan to Set An Upper Limit to Financial Aid for Home Help Services for Disabled Persons

Support Given Until Now Will Be Maintained in Full

Over 1000 people gathered at the Ministry of Health,
Labour and Welfare for protest action which continued
until late at night (Jan. 16)

The Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare’s decision to restrict the provision of financial aid for home help services for disabled persons from FY 2003 (starting April 1, 2003), met with strong opposition from organizations of disabled persons. On January 27, the Ministry finally conceded to alter the plan so as to maintain the level of services which had been provided until now, by introducing an “adjustment subsidy” system as an interim measure.

On January 16, over 1000 persons with disabilities gathered at the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare for a large-scale protest demonstration saying that “fixing regulations for the provision of financial aid will, in effect, set an upper limit to the amount of services which can be received”. On January 24, the Cabinet Office and the Special Committee on Disability of the Liberal Democratic Party held a joint meeting to discuss this issue. At this meeting, the representative of the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare commented that the regulations for the provision of financial aid are not meant to fix an upper limit, that the former subsidy will be maintained 100% by introducing an adjustment subsidy, and that these measures will be explained at the conference of the prefectural directors to be held on the 28th. The adjustment subsidy system was explained to be an interim measure.

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