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Sendai training foreigners to be leaders in time of disasters

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Maybe train the Japanese to do that? Japan doesn’t need foreigners unless it’s something their deathly afraid of doing, like using English

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

Just use an app like here in Hyogo. There are several disaster apps that work well.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Foreigners who live here should have basic Japanese. Tourist Information staff should speak other languages to help tourists in times of disaster.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Foreigners who live here should have basic Japanese. Tourist Information staff should speak other languages to help tourists in times of disaster.

Not all foreigners stay in Japan purely because they will, for example company transferee they need to be in any location around the globe. While other foreigners going to Japan is their purpose after they finished their schools or even earlier than that, so you can expect the latest group have certain knowledge about Japanese culture and language before they come to Japan.

Beside words to address during disaster can be really different from most words during daily life, they won't use konnichiwa, arigatou, gomenasai, ganbatte, samuidesune and atsuidesune.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Vince Black: "Maybe train the Japanese to do that?"

Obviously the Japanese doing the training would HAVE at least some of that kind of training, and the goal is to spread it. If foreigners also have the ability to help, what's the harm? It's more likely that a foreign visitor is going to see another foreigner in a time of panic and ask them for assistance.

"Japan doesn’t need foreigners unless it’s something their deathly afraid of doing, like using English"

Which, although you're being sarcastic to an extent, is the point: training someone who may be a native in that language to help other people more likely to use it as theirs... for simplicity sake.

"Foreigners who live here should have basic Japanese."

"Should" being the functional word there. And besides, while they may well be fluent in the language, not just have the basics, no foreign visitor should be required to know it all, and that's part of the point, in the opening lines -- to help overseas visitors when natural disasters hit.

I see nothing at all wrong with this. In fact, people insisting on Japanese being the ones trained, or foreigners needing to know Japanese already have completely missed the point.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I like the idea on inclusion of the foreign population in Sendai with this idea, but I wonder how many Japanese leaders exist.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

translating GOV orders???? prefer to follow my instinct to survive. I have been excluded from a shelter because I am a foreigner. foreigner are just treated as slave worker. and if you are not happy you got the famous speech: JAPANESE RULES!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Can we stop throwing the "foreigner" word around. Many of us have been here for decades, and do not see ourselves as outsiders. I know you come and goers don't care, but maybe "non-Japanese speakers" is best.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Can we stop throwing the "foreigner" word around. Many of us have been here for decades, and do not see ourselves as outsiders. I know you come and goers don't care, but maybe "non-Japanese speakers" is best.

I’ve been here for decades and speak Japanese to a good level. I frequently get treated as an outsider regardless of what I see myself as.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

I’ve been here for decades and speak Japanese to a good level. I frequently get treated as an outsider regardless of what I see myself as.

Hear, hear. 'Non-Japanese speaker' is a misnomer, as you can be fluent, but just not as invested in the minutiae of social mores as Hideo, Kazuko and the rest of your neighbours might be. On the contrary, if you've been here for decades and can't speak the language, the outsidership is self-inflicted, and - frankly - well earned.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

On the contrary, if you've been here for decades and can't speak the language, the outsidership is self-inflicted, and - frankly - well earned.

Good point. Anyone who has been here for more than 2 years and can't go shopping, 5 years and can't have a simple conversation, 10 years and can't read elementary kanji, need to get with it.

It seems many foreigners never really unpack their bags.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

When the quakes occurred in Kumamoto, I followed our neighbors lemming-like to an evacuation ground. Seeing so many families pitched on open tarps in the dark (electricity was out), I made three trips back to my house to get my three tents. The two large ones were used for elderly and families with young children, and my small tent I lent to a pregnant woman. (I used the elderly tent.)

One just needs to be proactive during a disaster.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@zichi. Not everyone has access to apps, not everyone has the technology. Also, in times of crisis networks can go down, batteries go flat. You need real people, on the ground, in times of emergency.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Luddite

@zichi. Not everyone has access to apps, not everyone has the technology. Also, in times of crisis networks can go down, batteries go flat. You need real people, on the ground, in times of emergency.

Agree. Apps are good. People on the ground are good but how to find them say like in the giant Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. Faxes are still available when power is down if the lines are still up. Short wave radio.

The apps are available on all smart phones.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

What different would it make? If a group of 50 non Japanese nationals made it to a safe spot, they would be given the run around while they take care of their own first. I'm just pointing out the obvious and facts. I've seen it and experienced it first hand before. They'd have people to tell you where to go (in English), After that, the Japanese staff have NO IDEA what to do with you because they don't know or understand English.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It would be better for them to pair up the leaders so that the there is one foreigner and one Japanese native there for every location. There are disaster training groups that have been around the world to assist with disasters and they already have software specifically for these types of issues. A couple of my friends were in Japan, Puerto Rico, The Philippines, and spots in the US like LA. If they partnered with those groups and trained up locals to work with foreigners at the same time they would have more people to break down the work load when there is a disaster. Use the tech that is already there because there are already vending machines in some areas that are setup to be anchor points for data and water in some places. It's easy to get around the lack of electricity. People have portable batteries that can last several days more than a couple weeks. There are solar setups that can be used as well as portable generators that you can drop in any flowing water to get power. They should be training the basics but still using modern tech as well. If some kids in Africa can do it then there is no reason that adults in Japan shouldn't be able to work things out. It's pretty sad that there are English classes in Japan but people are still lost because nobody is being thrown into situations where they have to use the language in order to pass their courses.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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