Hearing loss group petitions for introduction of note-taking in the Public Offices Election Law

Sing language interpreting provided at the private campaign speech for the Kyoto gubernatorial election. The note-taker is also called for while barrier-free environment progresses gradually.
(photo: http://www.kyoto-np.co.jp/)

April 2, 2014

A ban was removed on passing an image on a screen by a private campaign speech, and it became possible to perform note taking since the Upper House election in July, last year.

However, the Public Offices Election Law specifies that a note taker cannot get paid  during an election period while the candidate can pay sign-language interpreting remuneration. The Kyoto Prefecture Association of the Hearing Loss, etc. are asking to change it.

Since note-taking is one of the fundamental means of communication and information for the person with hearing loss who does not understand sign language. The expert has also insisted, "It is a defect in the law and an immediate improvement is required."

A candidate for the prefecture gubernatorial election scheduled on April 6 held a campaign meeting in Fushimi-ku, Kyoto-shi on March 28. Then the person in charge who prepared sign-language interpreting said regrettably, "Although we would like to advance accessibility in an election, it is impossible to request a note-taker who considers it as work without remuneration."

The Prefecture Association of the Hearing Loss has indicated, "If there is no information accessibility, it means a hearing loss person cannot do anything with an election."

On the other hand, the election division in the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications says, "the election campaign is not an employment matter but working voluntarily is a principle. It is supposed on the present legal provision that remuneration cannot be paid to a note taker."

Japanese source:

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