Communication “to touch” Corona has difficulty affecting people who are blind and blind 23 May 16:33

The new coronavirus also has a significant impact on the lives of people with "blindness" who have impaired eyes and ears. People who are “blind” often communicate by directly touching the other person's hand, and in order to prevent infection, contact with the outside is greatly reduced, hindering their lives, and increasing the burden on their families. In some cases, the people concerned are calling for better support.

People who are “blind” are blind or hard to see, as well as deaf or hard of hearing. The world-famous Helen Keller is one of them.

Miki Imoto (13), a second-year middle school student living in Kawasaki City, is blind and deaf by nature. Miki receives various signs and communicates mainly by directly touching the other hand.

Due to the need to touch each other's hands, I have taken a break from school at the end of February, and my parents and my sister's family of four have been refraining from going out to prevent infection with the new coronavirus.

Miki cannot get information directly from TV, newspapers or the Internet. He couldn't understand the current situation changed by the virus and hated wearing a mask, so he could hardly do even a light walk for a change, and he said that he was getting stressed by the day.

My family's burden is increasing, including support for studying, as my palms are scratched too much and my skin peels off or I suddenly start crying, which can lead to mental instability.

Chikako, her mother, said, "I feel like" I'm no longer happy "these days. Deaf-blind people can't live without humans, so if a virus makes it difficult to contact people," I would like to let many people know about the obstacle to blindness and connect it to the necessary support. ”

Approximately 14,000 people nationwide

According to the National Welfare Association for the Blind, it is estimated that there are approximately 14,000 blind people in the nation, and they are consulted by themselves and their families.

The most noticeable is the acquisition of information. Depending on the degree of disability, people with deafblindness often communicate by directly touching the other person's hand, and are now required to avoid close situations. It means that the situation is very difficult to achieve.

"I can't go out freely because I can't talk to people without touching them directly or in the vicinity."
"I was refused the dispatch of interpreters and assistants, and received the support I needed for life.
There are also serious voices saying, "I can't do it."

Masatomo Yamashita, Secretary-General of the Association, said, "Even if we try to live by avoiding the three secrets, it has not been fully communicated to the deafblind. We want you to convey essential information. If the people who help you don't come to your home, you can't do anything if you can't go out by yourself. We should think about rewarding them. "

"" Tactile "is being robbed ..."

I spoke with Professor Satoshi Fukushima of the University of Tokyo, who is studying how barrier-free society should be, from the perspective of being blind and blind to himself.

Professor Fukushima said, “When you put on a mask, you don't smell much, and the last important feeling left is“ tactile = touching ”, but you are told to avoid touching people, and the senses are gradually deprived. The new coronavirus is extremely harsh to people. "

In addition, "I want people who are deaf and blind who live by touching them to give disinfectants a priority, and they should properly support not only the person who has various hardships but also the family. It is important not only to support each supporter and interpreter, but it is also important to financially support the core NPO and other support organizations. "