Disability Japan Politics Reiwa Shinsengumi

Newly elected Diet member with ALS seeks to change care for disabled, opposes LDP plans

""I want to make use of my experience in politics to realize a society that can live a life with dignity and enjoyment regardless of disability or illness.” By listening to the voices of various persons with disabilities and disseminating them at the Diet, he expressed his willingness to change to the policy for persons with disabilities that can realize “reasonable consideration” from the standpoint of the parties."

Written with extracts from The Tokyo Shimbun

August 27th 2019

Yasuhiko Funago, a member of the House of Representatives (61), who became the first parliamentary member to have amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) said“we have a chance to change our care, ”. He expressed his opposition to the LDP reform bill. He called for the opposition party to fight together to abolish or reduce the consumption tax as an issue in the next election for the House of Representatives.

“I want to make use of my experience in politics to realize a society that can live a life with dignity and enjoyment regardless of disability or illness.” By listening to the voices of various persons with disabilities and disseminating them at the Diet, he expressed his willingness to change to the policy for persons with disabilities that can realize “reasonable consideration” from the standpoint of the parties.

He also expressed his intention to focus on the spread of “inclusive education” where disabled and healthy people can learn in the same environment as the non-disabled. “Growing together and learning from the classroom where children and people with disabilities grow naturally will lead to a society free from discrimination and prejudice.”

The interview was conducted both in writing and face-to-face. Mr. Funago has no audio-visual problems, but he cannot speak and cannot move his limbs. A computer with a sensor in his mouth was used, and he answered questions from a paper given in advance. In the interview, Mr. Funago, who received the reporter’s question, followed the transparent dial and communicated the answer to the helper, who read it.

Regarding the constitution, he pointed out that “the right to live a healthy and cultural minimum life” set by Article 25 is “not fully recognized by people with disabilities”.  Article 25 is listed in the Constitution, and regards the establishment of an emergency clause that allows for the extension of the term of parliament and concentration of authority over the government, in the event of an emergency such as the commencement of a war, the disabled person will be cut off.

The Abe administration was criticized by citing a survey in which a majority of households answered that their lives were difficult. The government was analyzed because the opposition party has not been able to come up with a solid economic policy. He stated that the opposition party’s policy was to abolish the consumption tax or reduce the tax to 5% and to change the administration in the next House of Representatives election.

 

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