By Barrier Free Japan with extracts translated from The Sanyo Shimbun
August 3 2021
OKAYAMA – Due to the influence of the new coronavirus, the facilities where people with disabilities work in Okayama Prefecture are under pressure. Events were cancelled one after another due to infection prevention measures, and opportunities to sell products such as handmade bread and handicrafts, which were sources of income, decreased sharply. This is because the number of orders from business partners has decreased significantly at business establishments that process parts as a subcontractor. Each facility is trying to find a way to develop sales channels and develop new products in order to support the lives of people with disabilities.
Sales are down for people with disabilities 20 to 30 percent
Many of the facilities where people with disabilities work to produce bread and sweets and sell them at events and stores. These sales, together with subsidies from the government, are used to cover the costs of wages, production and sales. Since last April, the coronavirus pandemic has drastically changed this trend. Events such as the New Year’s visit to the shrine, tourist events during the Golden Week, and summer and autumn festivals, which the company had opened in previous years, were cancelled, forcing a significant decrease in revenue.