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  • #6113


    Hello, I am currently living in Tokyo as a Japanese language foreign exchange student. And I use a wheelchair 100% of the time since I lost basically all movement of my lower limbs.

    As I did not have much time to look for a place and also because I honestly had no idea how to even begin to search for accessible accommodation in Japan, the apartment I am currently living in is not accessible, I can manage but it is far from ideal. So now that I am here, kind of settled and I have the time, I would like to ask some tips on how to find an accessible place to live. I have done some searching and some sites have the barrier free option to filter the results, but in some cases that does not necessarily mean the results will be barrier free.

    Also, since I get asked quite a lot for it, I would like to know if it is possible for me to get a shougaisha techou. I already have the form, but I am having trouble actually getting a doctor to fill it in for me. I tried going to the hospital and they told me that even if the doctor sees me they cannot fill it in for me because I have to be a patient at that hospital. So I would like to know how should I proceed to take the techou.

    Best regards!

  • Author
  • #6114



    Starting with the techo, if you are a resident (ie not on a tourist visa) you are able to get one.  The doctor’s note/recommendation cannot be any doctor, it must be a certified by the city.  So, the first step is to go to the disability welfare department of the city you live in.  They will explain the steps you need to take and give you contact information for doctors / testing.  It will take a number of months.

    As for housing, yes there is certainly not enough and the barrier free housing listed online is questionable at the best of times.  I would suggest finding a disability community group.  They will likely have the contacts you need as they too are using accessible housing!

    Maybe start by contacting JIL: http://www.j-il.jp/english

    Please keep us in the loop!

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