INTERVIEW: Disabled Japan Lawmaker Points to Need for Online Diet Session

Politics

Tokyo, Aug. 3 (Jiji Press)--A Japanese lawmaker with a severe disability has pointed to the need for the country to hold online parliamentary sessions.

In a recent interview, Yasuhiko Funago, a member of the House of Councillors, the upper chamber of the Diet, Japan's parliament, who has amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, said, " I had to make the tough decision of not attending the Diet session for a few days between late February and early March, amid the spread of the novel coronavirus in Japan."

"If remote parliamentary deliberations and online voting for bills were allowed, I didn't have to be absent," Funago, who is from the small opposition party Reiwa Shinsengumi, added.

"Japan should allow online Diet sessions, including remote attendance," he continued.

He said that severely disabled people were being left behind in the efforts by companies and the government to introduce telework and remote work systems amid the pandemic.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press