Facing Heavy Storms
From “Kazenoko Letter” No.410 - March 2012

 Osaka is the birthplace of social services established in the Taisho, and the beginning of the Showa period, before the rest of Japan. It can be said that most social welfare institutions started in Osaka and spread throughout Japan.

 After WWII, Osaka City implemented necessary measures which the government hadn’t, setting up its own budgets. Those of us who do social work are very proud of this. This glorious history has gradually gone downhill since then. All measures implemented independently by Osaka City have been discontinued and everything has proceeded according to national standards.

 For example, there was a contract doctor who managed children’s health at a daycare center, but this subsidy was cut. And the national standard for infant care is one nursery staff to six one-year-old children, but Osaka City has provided a subsidy so that there is one nursery staff to five one-year-old children. However, this subsidy will change for the worse next year, according to the national standard. Therefore, the outlook for one-year-old children’s classes next year is not good.

 Kazenoko Jidokan Kodomo no Ie (After School Program) has provided services for elementary school children, but Osaka City has moved towards subsidy cuts. A tentative subsidy will be provided from April to July next year, and then decisions made after re-examination.

 At our other centers for children with intellectual disabilities, “Awaji Kodomoen” and “Himejima Kodomoen”, the subsidy for part-time nurses was cut this year, and then next year, an awful measure to cut the subsidy for hiring freelance nursery staff which has been provided for many years will be implemented.

 That Osaka City’s social welfare will proceed under such awful conditions is very disappointing for people who know about our past. However, we try to do our best for the individuals under all circumstances.

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