“Direct touch” communication difficult in Corona Affects blind people May 23 16:33
The new coronavirus has a major impact on the lives of blind deaf people with eye and ear problems. “Deaf blind people” often interact directly with the other person’s hands, and in some cases, in order to prevent infection, contact with the outside world is greatly reduced, hindering their lives, and increasing the burden on their families, and the parties concerned are appealing for enhanced support.
In addition to being blind or hard to see, people who are blind are deaf or difficult to hear. The world-famous Helen Keller is one of them.
Miki Imoto, a junior high school student living in Kawasaki City, is naturally blind and deaf. Miki receives various signs and communicates with each other mainly by touching them directly.
In an effort to prevent the infection of the new coronavirus, he has been absent from school since the end of the month, and his parents and sister’s family are holding off from going out.
Miki cannot get information directly from tv, newspapers, or the Internet. Because he couldn’t understand the current situation that was completely changed by the virus, and he didn’t want to wear a mask, even a light walk for a change of pace was almost impossible, and he was stressed out day by day.
The burden on families, including the support of study, has increased, as they can become mentally unstable, such as scratching their palms too much and peeling off or suddenly crying.
Her mother, Chikako, said, “Recently, I’ve been saying, ‘I’ve been trying to do this. Because life does not consist without the person, all support is discontinued when becoming ‘It is not good to touch the person’ by the virus. I hope that many people will learn about the disability of blindness and help them with the support they need.”
About 14,000 people nationwide
According to the National Association for the Deaf and The Deaf, a social welfare corporation, there are thought to be about 10,000 deaf people in Japan, and consultations are received from the person in question and his family.
One of the most prominent is the acquisition of information. Blind people are often directly in touch with the other person and communicate with each other, so it is very difficult to communicate with non-family members who live with them now that they are asked to avoid close situations.
“It’s very hard not to go out freely because you can’t touch people directly or have conversations without people nearby.”
“I’m refused to send interpreters and assistance people, and I can’t get the support I need for my life.”
It is that serious voices have also been sent.
Masatomo Yamashita, executive director of the Association, said, “If we are to live with three close ness, it is not well understifable to the deaf. I want you to be able to transmit essential information. In addition, if interpreters and assistance people do not come to my house, the reality is that if you can’t go out alone, you can’t do anything. We should also consider rewarding people who interpret and assist in some way so that support can be available.”
“The sense of touch is being taken away…”
From the standpoint of blindness and deafblindness, I spoke to Professor Satoshi Fukushima of the University of Tokyo, who is studying the barrier-free state of society.
Prof. Fukushima said, “When you wear a mask, you don’t smell much, and the last important feeling left is “touch”, but you are told to avoid touching people, and your senses are gradually deprived. For deaf blindpeople, the new coronavirus is very harsh.”
He added, “I want the disinfectant to be distributed preferentially to the blind deaf who are living by touching it more than anyone else, and we should support not only the person who has various difficulties, but also the family. Not only do we support each and every supporter and interpreter, but it is also important to support support groups such as NPOs, which are the core of this project.”