Online Community Eyed for Ex-Patients of Arson-Hit Osaka Clinic

Politics

Osaka, Feb. 17 (Jiji Press)--Two months after the Dec. 17 deadly arson incident at a mental health clinic in the western Japan city of Osaka, a local company supporting people with disabilities is preparing to launch an online platform on March 1 to allow former clinic patients to share their worries and experiences.

Located only a few minutes' walk away from the arson site in the city's Kita Ward, the company called Shogaisha.com offers job consultation and other services, with its staff including people with mild developmental disabilities. Some of the victims in the attack were receiving support from the company.

Former patients of the clinic "may have been traumatized" by the arson attack, which killed 25 people, the company's head, Yuichi Kawada, 49, said.

As there are many people with anxiety who feel it is difficult to consult anybody, Kawada's wife Naomi, 49, who also works at the company, calls for such people not to worry alone. "Talking will help people sort out their feelings," she said.

The online platform will be open not just to former clinic patients, but also to those who are not receiving psychiatric treatment but feeling isolated.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press