A woman rides a bicycle near the Olympic Rings in Tokyo on Wednesday. Photo: AP/Eugene Hoshiko
tokyo 2020 olympics

10,000 Tokyo Olympic volunteers have now pulled out: organizers

61 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© KYODO

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

61 Comments
Login to comment

Or,

70,000 have said they’ll continue on with the job despite the pandemic!

-24 ( +9 / -33 )

Given that so many foreign spectators will be absent, fewer volunteers are needed anyway.

14 ( +18 / -4 )

Those 70,000 are immortals!

0 ( +9 / -9 )

Last night’s Headline:

Tokyo Olympics are still on, despite opposition, pandemic,

and 10,000 less volunteers!

doesn’t make things look any better.

18 ( +20 / -2 )

Nice work! Now, they just need to convince 70,000 more to quit!

22 ( +29 / -7 )

Reported overseas, Japans Top Government Health Adviser, said “Hosting Olympic Games during pandemic 'not normal', Japan's top medical adviser says

He also said....In one of the strongest warnings yet, government medical adviser Shigeru Omi said organisers should explain to the public why they were going ahead.

‘They can’t explain why?, that would be an admittance of self centred greed.

When you ignore medical experts don’t by surprised with the outcome.

30 ( +30 / -0 )

Is not surprising. Because tourist aren't coming from overseas, they also do not need so many volunteers. There is not much for them to do considering it's now only athletes playing the games.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

I think there is no doubt that one of the reasons is concern over coronavirus infections," Toshiro Muto, CEO of the organizing committee, told reporters. One of the reasons, surely THE reason.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

10,000 people are smart and have good self preservation instincts!

The fewer people who go to, support, or watch this mess the better.

22 ( +22 / -0 )

I suspect the majority didn’t want people in their neighborhood or workplaces to find out that they volunteered for something 80% of citizens oppose.

16 ( +16 / -0 )

more will follow, especially when the infections increase

13 ( +13 / -0 )

I said it before, having 80.000 volunteers is unworkable but the reason to them was so Dentsu and other agencies could charge and overcharge to train them.

an organisor is only really helped by repeat and experienced volunteers( at yearly events). At the Games 5000 to 15000 is the maximum helpful requirement.

since a lot of them were to guide fans to venues and show them their seats... the LOC tokyo will be happy with less of them. Recognising even admiring their great intentions volunteers are a huge potential problem as an organisor has no control over them. They are not employees, so nothing can be done if they don’t show up.luckily in Japan that is a lesser problem. Still, here, they must be thought as the venues are new, it is a one time event, must be dressed etc.. so more efficient would br less and better taken care of and respected but that is not in the interest of the training companies and agencies

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Good for the 10,000

The games will go on because the IOC and the Japanese government simply do not care about Japanese citizens. This has been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt now.

80 percent (not wanting the games to go on as scheduled) is considered a massive landslide in any election and would be called grounds for a "mandate". Not in Japan where a few old men who have been pampered and spoiled their entire life rule over the masses.

I have not met one Japanese person who supports these games and almost 100% of my interactions in Japan are with Japanese people. As a matter of fact people that I would assume would support the games are even against this insanity (bad on me for assuming).

Total craziness

12 ( +12 / -0 )

And the real number of those who quit is likely more around 30.000. For other events in normal times the % is around 15% , so i think here about 30.000 to 40.000 is closer the real number

4 ( +5 / -1 )

As part of measures to ensure the games' safety, the organizers have barred spectators from overseas. While there will be about 15,000 athletes, they will be kept in a bubble environment with their movements primarily restricted to transit to and from their venues.

How do they realistically expect that they will be able to keep this many athletes, and what was it, up to 100,000 journalists and support people from leaving their "bubble"

I can just see people around Tokyo taking pictures of Olympic staff and athletes visiting tourist spots all over the place, and posting them online.

And the government doing nothing about it!

The government will change their tune and start to say "Oh they are ok!" "They were all vaccinated, so everything is alright!

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Will volunteers at least be able to get vaccinated before the games?

I’d think that would be a deal breaker if not.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There have been adverts for "volunteer" staff on tempstaff websites like Human Trust for weeks now. The ads don't mention the Olympics/Paralympics, just say "sports event in Ariake" or wherever. 2000 yen an hour plus transport.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Unfortunately, the other 70,000 are pro IOC.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Good to see the 10,000 people have not been completely brainwashed.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Im not an expert or a Doctor by an stretch of the imagination, however do you think that the volunteers that quit just thought it best not to bring COVID 19 back home to their families after a day out at the Japan Olympics?

15 ( +15 / -0 )

That is good there is 70,000 people willing to help. Plus outside doctors, dentists and such! Good JOB Japan. Keep going!

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

Also not all of it has to do with virus fears. Some volunteers quit because they worry about their peers and neighbors talking about them to each other. Neighbors talk big time in rural and suburban neighborhoods and attending these unpopular Games is not a good look.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Come on Simian, you know the rules. Only fear mongering allowed.

Remember, we’re supposed to be REAL scared of this disease that only affects old people with an average of five co-morbidities.

-17 ( +4 / -21 )

People complained about the athletes' support crew being too many.

Eighty THOUSAND people to do jobs most of which a laminated card could do. You've all seen shopping centers here with 5 or 6 retirees getting in the way of traffic waving their flashing sticks. Completely useless if not counterproductive. How many of these volunteers are actually needed?

I've said this time and time again. The real risk of infection here is to the athletes, not from them.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Shogun 36, I have been told by a friend who volunteered that volunteers have been offered a vaccination by Tokyo City.

The catch is that it is a vaccination for rubella that they have been offered, one that they shouldn't need as it is a once a lifetime vaccination that all Japanese should have had.

Anyway, I don't think anyone should work unpaid for the Olympics as it is all about making, scamming, as much money as possible.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

crazy how they going ahead with the Olympics despite top health advisors saying it's "not normal" japan will be the next India. India ignores the advice from health advisors and looks at what happens in their country. Japan is next... we need to stop the Olympics before it's too late. The money they spend for this should go towards the people who lost their jobs, people in hospitals, people losing hours, and income from the pandemic....

8 ( +8 / -0 )

The j-gov is paying juicy salaries to these volunteers but most of the money is sucked by intermediaries and politicians... The volunteers end up with just peanuts.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

10,000 Tokyo Olympic volunteers have now pulled out: organizers

Again the key information has been missed:

Is this the organisers actively canvassing the 80000 volunteers and being given an official response one way or another?

Or

Is this just volunteers calling up the organisers and saying they don't want to be part of it?

If it is the latter, the figure of 10,000 is probably the tip of the iceberg.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

This is NOT going to the Normal Olympics as we know it, and I wouldn't be so surprised if it still gets cancelled!

being the most unpopular games ever.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

I'd be quite happy to be a paid volunteer :)

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

More people now stay at home than ever before. Even if people can go out options for leisure are limited also.

It should be easy to see why IOC is moving heaven and earth to avoid cancellation of the Olympics.

This will probably be the most watched Olympics by a big margin.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Unvaccinated 70k volunteers, athletes, and tens of thousands of media reps/officials,

we're cookin' up a good covid soup.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

I wonder how many volunteers just won’t show up?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

@ A Johnsonyou have explained all in a nutshell. If only my daughters understand.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

As we know, in Japan it's never too early to take a wait and see attitude... It will be interesting to see how many actually show up, particularly if they are still unvaccinated.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

“A woman rides a bicycle near the Olympic Rings in Tokyo on Wednesday”

why are the bike seats always too low in Japan? People cycling with their feet in a permanent angle.
2 ( +2 / -0 )

15,000 athletes require 78,000 overseas officials and workers, less than half the initial figure. ?

So it takes that many brown envelopes ?

15,000 athletes being pampered by 78,000 support staff while the rest of Tokyo's citizens pick up the tab and the virus , something terribly wrong with this picture isnt there.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Roughly 10,000 of the 80,000 volunteers... have quit.

A surprisingly small number.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

bokudaToday 09:36 am JST

The j-gov is paying juicy salaries to these volunteers but most of the money is sucked by intermediaries and politicians... The volunteers end up with just peanuts.

The volunteers get nothing , they are unpaid , just the glory or the thrill of being part of this circus is all they get.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Do they need volunteers now that there will be FA foreign fans coming over?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

They commute daily between us normal people and the isolated venues with athletes and their many kinds of imported virus loads, right? Then those remaining 70,000 are the potential super spreading force.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Don't believe the media spin. They pulled out because of less hours and less chance to practice their English. Or even so most likely they were asked to quit because the help isn't needed.

If they were afraid of the virus they would stay home. I don't see anyone staying home because of the virus. Practically no one is afraid.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Bjorn, the most definitely get some compensation. The word volunteer doesn't hold the same meaning as many japanese from english words do.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Sign me up the Olympics are going on like it or not may as well make the most out of it.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

"Field Cast" volunteers, who were recruited by the organizing committee from over 200,000 applications, were expected to take various roles, such as serving as guides at venues and helping out at the athletes' village.

Are they all vaccinated?

they will be kept in a bubble environment with their movements primarily restricted to transit to and from their venues.

Unvaccinated volunteers helping out at the athlete’s village ain’t no bubble.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

We need to recalibrate our risk assesments.

If most of the visitors are vaccinated, risks are greatly reduced, to them and from them.

Greatest concern should be on risks of infection/spreading among the unvaccinated locals working together and spectators if there would be any

0 ( +0 / -0 )

WhatsnextToday 12:18 pm JST

Bjorn, the most definitely get some compensation. The word volunteer doesn't hold the same meaning as many japanese from english words do.

Please validate this , as the official word at the time was no pay !

Please show me where it says they get paid !

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The coming collapse.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Nowhere has "controlled infections".........not even with the vaccine.....that's why parts of the UK are talking about a third wave and different parts of the country are under more stricter conditions....but that's ok because the vaccine reduces the severity of the reaction to the virus and reduces deaths. The problem in Japan is that they waited so bloody long to roll out the vaccination program!! That somehow the 160 Japanese tested in their safety trial was significant in the safety of the vaccine, but the tens of thousands (and then millions of actual people who received it) who took part around the world in the trials were not.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

How can a volunteers quit ? They volunteered. More like declined due the SOE. By using the wording "quit" to some how demonise this group of decliners after the TOC actually hand selected them from 200,000 ( not a lottery ) is a pretty low act. But the IOC is insisting the game must go on even in a SOE is a low act also. So I assume these two group must be competing for the Olympic gold metal for low acts.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Nowhere has "controlled infections".

Australians and Kiwis would beg to differ.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

How can a volunteers quit ?

Because they had a job, then they quit it.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I was a volunteer. The reason was I thought it would be fun to meet people from around the world and I could have a little holiday away from Osaka. Once the decision was made that visitors from other countries would be banned then it reduced any real fun being a volunteer.

I was concerned that I would spend many hours doing nothing and feeling useless. I was concerned that although I was prepared to pay for travel and accomodation for two weeks I might be forced to quarantine myself before/after away from home at my own expense. That I might be forced to travel to for extra training at my own expense. The list of concerns grew larger when they went ahead with the flame runaround. I asked about the safety of this and was given a standard answer which did not reflect my understanding of how the desease spread and did not seem to put measures in place that would avoid it.

I then asked if I could move the places I would volunteer to Osaka and thus avoid moving around the country myself and reduce any extra costs I though they would add at the last minute. That request was denied and so I felt it pointless to continue.

To stop being a volunteer all I had to do is click a tick box and cofirm. I was not asked for a reason and therefore no one really knows why 10,000 people have stopped. I expect for many reasons but I am sure lack of communication about concerns was a major factor.

I do know people who have continued and I do know they are being asked to do things that are costing them extra. They are of course under contract and can not speak out and even if they did who would listen.

Personally when it happens I will just ignore the whole thing, ignore the products with the logos on and wait for the circus to leave town. If one person from the UK takes back and spreads the virus then I will spend the 50 pounds to take them to court personally. It is those atheletes and media and hangers on who really should be called out for being disloyal to their own countries health and welfare. They have a choice and they have chosen to be selfish.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

10,000 is a very small number! Japan is doing great and I am happy to support the Olympics! I will be handing out flyers at the Olympics and can't wait to be part of history!

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

"Field Cast" volunteers, who were recruited by the organizing committee from over 200,000 applications, were expected to take various roles, such as serving as guides at venues and helping out at the athletes' village.

See above, helping at the Village....WTF, how on earth are they going to have even a slight chance of a bubble.....clearly it has already BURST!!!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Muto also said about 190,000 officials and workers from Japan, including members of the organizing committee, volunteers, security personnel, sponsors and press will be involved in the Olympics, and 110,000 in the Paralympics.

Plus the athletes? Does it include drivers? Cleaners? Catering staff? Technicians that keep buildings running? Ouch!

Trying to do the sums from the random and sometimes incomplete stats churned out in press releases, this does sound like over a third of a million bodies swishing around, home to bubble, bubble to home, hotel to shopping, hotel to stadium, press office to bar ... Hmm, is that really such a wonderful idea, yathink...?

do you think that the volunteers that quit just thought it best not to bring COVID 19 back home to their families after a day out at the Japan Olympics?

Or maybe it might not be such a good idea to bring Covid19 from their homes and take it for a day out at the Olympics either?

Just to be clear, the problem here is not just incoming viruses, not just 'local' variants, it's the Full Monty, both of these, and the various mixings and recombinations doctors are saying could easily take place, and create Olympic variants/ Tokyo variants/ IOC variants. It is meaningless to talk about a bubble, when that bubble will be serviced by tens of thousands of people travelling into and out of it daily. and with the suppressed testing in Japan, the risk of an overseas visitor picking up something nasty and taking it home, never mind helping to overwhelm our health system here in the meantime, is high.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I sincerely hope that the Japanese people do not suffer through a surge in Covid-19 cases this summer.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

OlympicSupportToday 02:20 pm JST

10,000 is a very small number! Japan is doing great and I am happy to support the Olympics! I will be handing out flyers at the Olympics and can't wait to be part of history!

Yeah sadly on the wrong side of it, or a black spot it .

make the right choice, dont bother with the circus, DO THE RIGHT THING !

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I wonder if the Olympic chief will become a volunteer now!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Money grubbing bunch, come volunteer for the olumpics for free and pound bach and the others make millions off it. You must be a bit thick, or simple to not see through this whole thing, its about as wrong as anything can get , isnt it close to what they call taking advantage of the stupid ?

EXPLOITATION or something isnt it?

Free labour while the top echelons rake in the millions, or are you too blind , stupid and simple to see what is going on here?

Every tax payer of Tokyo is getting screwed and some silly people are offering to work for the olympics for free ?

About to be deleted for being offensive , off topic or some other made up rule.

But i would say going to be deleted because its the damn truth and people cant handle the truth and it offends the sponsors or the the people who want to take the high ground and be politically correct , This place !!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Considering 3.5 million people pass through Shinjuku station every weekday these numbers are nothing. Sorry to disappoint the gloomsters but the Olympics aren't going to cause an increase in corona cases, they are however a total waste of tax payers' money.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites