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8/4: Online Vigil for the Murdered Disabled People of Sagamihara

Black image with white text that reads: Online Vigil and Chat Disabled People of Tsukui Yamayuri En Sagamihara, Japan Thursday, August 4, 2016 8 pm Eastern 9 am Japan (Aug. 5) Hosts @DisVisibility @dominickevans Guest host: @peckitt #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP

August 2016 post-script: A Storify of the online vigil can found here:

Online Vigil and Chat

Disabled People of Tsukui Yamayuri En

Sagamihara, Japan

Thursday, August 4, 2016

8 pm Eastern

9 am Japan (Aug. 5)


The Disability Visibility Project will be partnering with disabled filmmaker and activist Dominick Evans in an online vigil and chat remembering the 19 disabled people of the Tsukui Yamayuri En residential care facility in Sagamihara, Japan who were murdered and the 26 people that survived on July 26, 2016.

Joining us as a guest host is Dr. Michael Gillan Peckitt, an academic who lives in Nada-Ku, Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture, Japan. He runs a disability related website ‘The Limping Philosopher’ and you can find him on Twitter: @Peckitt.

  • We do not presume to speak for or represent disabled people living in Japan (and in Tsukui Yamayuri En specifically). We cannot possibly imagine what they are going through right now.


  • We can collectively share our pain and show solidarity and support to  disability communities in Japan. We can talk about the lack of media coverage and overall attention paid to this mass killing rooted in hate.


  • While everyone is welcome, this online vigil will be centered on the voices and lives of disabled people, especially disabled people of color who have been so impacted.


  • There will be discussions of violence, ableism, murder, and death. Please practice self-care. You can find our questions for our chat below if you want to prepare.

Also note: the conversation on 8/4 will NOT cover the following:

-The murderer and his background

-Cultural attitudes toward disability, specifically Japan

-Debates about institutionalization vs. community living

-Policies, legislation, or ideas on ‘improving’ security and preventing violence

-Demands or petitions of any kind. This is a time and space for reflection.

How to Participate

Follow @dominickevans @DisVisibility @Peckitt on Twitter.

Look for the hashtag #SagamiharaDVP or tweets from @DisVisibility to start the facilitation of the chat on 8/4 at 8 pm Eastern.

When tweeting, use 2 hashtags: #SagamiharaDVP and #Sagamihara.

#SagamiharaDVP will be used so folks can find this specific conversation easily.

#Sagamihara to make our conversation visible to people who need to know more about the disability experience.

If you don’t use Twitter and want to see the tweets about the online vigil as it happens, you can go to this link and follow the conversation:

If you’re new to Twitter chats, check out this explanation of what happens during a chat by Ruti Regan:

#SagamiharaDVP Tweets 8/4 online vigil and chat

Welcome to our online vigil for the 19 disabled people murdered at Tsukui Yamayuri En #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP

We plan to talk openly about ableism, murder, eugenics & death. Please practice self-care if triggered. #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP

We will NOT talk about the murderer, mental health, politics, causes or prevention of violence, or security #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP

Please avoid any speculation or making generalizations or comparisons of cultures Not useful or helpful. #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP

More importantly, this is a time to mourn collectively & show solidarity and support #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP

If you respond to a question such as Q1, your tweet should follow this format: “A1 [your message] #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP”  

At this time, please tweet and share your grief and thoughts for the dead. Questions coming next. #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP

Q1 What was your response when you heard about the mass murder at #Sagamihara? How did you feel? What did you think? #SagamiharaDVP

Q2 Currently, how are you processing what happened #Sagamihara? How do you practice self-care when such events happen? #SagamiharaDVP

Q3 We may never know their names/anything about their lives. How can we honor them & their memory going forward? #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP

Q4 What messages of support and solidarity do you want to share with surviving disabled people from #Sagamihara? #SagamiharaDVP

Q5 Do you think the world took enough notice of what happened in #Sagamihara? What’s your assessment of the media coverage? #SagamiharaDVP

Hate, ableism, eugenics & euthanasia are intertwined in the murders of disabled people in #Sagamihara. #SagamiharaDVP

Q6 Do you think these murders are a form of ableist terrorism and genocide? If so, why? Something else? #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP

Q7 As a disabled person, what final thoughts do you want to share, specifically with non-disabled people, about #Sagamihara? #SagamiharaDVP

This concludes our online vigil & chat. Thank you to @Peckitt @dominickevans & everyone who participated #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP

Feel free to continue the conversation and remember to take care of yourself and those you love! #Sagamihara #SagamiharaDVP

Additional Links

Actions, Articles and Statements on Sagamihara, Japan

Kit Mead, August 3, 2016


Michael Gillan Peckitt

A white man sitting on a bench with a cane. He is wearing dark sunglasses and has a black cap on his head. Behind him is an urban landscape of a city in Japan

Born in Sheffield in 1978, Michael studied Philosophy at the University of Hull, obtaining his Bachelor’s degree in 2001 and his PhD in 2010.  He has had left-sided spastic hemiplegic cerebral palsy  and epilepsy since birth. He was a tutor at Hull University from 2003-2006 and is since May 2012 is an Honorary Research Associate attached to the Philosophy Department.  Until October 2013 he was an Honorary Visiting Researcher at the University of Tokyo. Michael is currently a part time lecturer at Osaka University.

Michael married Minae Inahara in 2007, herself a writer on disability and Philosophy PhD. whom he lives with in Japan.

Dominick Evans

Photo of a man with short dark hair and glasses. He has stubble around his chin and neck. He is in a wheelchair with a black headrest behind him. He is wearing an argyle-print sweater in different shades of blue.

Dominick Evans is a director/filmmaker, activist, writer, advocate, Polish American, and trans man from the Midwest who lives in New York. He currently works for the Center for Disability Rights as a Media & Entertainment Advocate. Dominick is a passionate human rights activist who has extensive experience fighting for the rights of the disability and LGBTQ communities. Follow his film career and join his weekly Twitter chat on film and disability by following #FilmDis. He currently has a BFA in Film and is close to completing a BA in Political Science. You can check him out at his website,

Alice Wong
Image of an Asian American woman in her bedroom. She's in a wheelchair and wearing a mask around her nose with a tube. She has a multi-colored plaid scarf around her neck.

Alice Wong is a San Francisco-based disability advocate, freelance journalist, television watcher, cat lover, and coffee drinker. Currently, she is the Founder and Project Coordinator for the Disability Visibility Project (DVP), a community partnership with StoryCorps and an online community dedicated to recording, amplifying, and sharing disability stories and culture. Currently she is a co-partner with Andrew Pulrang and Gregg Beratan for #CripTheVote, a non-partisan online campaign encouraging the political participation of people with disabilities. She is also a Staff Research Associate at the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, University of California, San Francisco.


7 thoughts on “8/4: Online Vigil for the Murdered Disabled People of Sagamihara Leave a comment

  1. As I am currently a student in Japan I will probably be commuting at that time and unable to participate, unfortunately. I am glad this is happening but I really wish I could be a part of it.

  2. As I am a student in New Zealand now, I am still in the class when this happening and unable to participate. Wish there is something that I can obtain recording or written comments regarding this.

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