Tokyo: The Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (Tokyo 2020) today unveiled details of the Paralympic Torch Relay.
These include the names of the cities in all of Japan’s 47 prefectures where Paralympic Flames will be lit and where flame departure ceremonies will be held, details of the Torch Relay routes in each of the four prefectures co-hosting Paralympic events, and guidelines covering the recruitment of torchbearers.
In line with the concept 'Share Your Light', the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Torch Relay aims to generate excitement and create a festive-like atmosphere in the build-up to the Paralympic Games, at the same time maintaining the momentum of the Olympic Games during the transition period to the Paralympic Games.
1. Regional Flame Lighting & Departure Details
Regional flame lighting celebrations and departure ceremonies will be held in 43 of Japan’s 47 prefectures between 13 and 17 August 2020 and between 18 and 21 August in the four prefectures co-hosting Paralympic events, with events taking place in more than 700 locations overall.
A spectacular Heritage Flame Lighting Event will be held on 20 August 2020 atin Stoke Mandeville Stadium in the Great Britain, the spiritual birthplace of the Paralympic Movement. The event will involve Paralympians, Para sport demonstrations, a stunning fireworks display and thousands of members of the local community. The names of the cities in Japan where Paralympic Flames will be lit and where the individual Torch Relays will commence can be viewed at https://tokyo2020.org/en/special/torch/paralympic/
2. Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Torch Relay Route
In addition to the flame-lighting festivals and departure ceremonies, torch relays will be held in the four prefectures co-hosting Paralympic events. The flames from all over Japan and Stoke Mandeville will be brought together in Tokyo on 21 August where the official Paralympic Flame will be lit. The final leg of the Paralympic Torch Relay will then commence, with the Relay traversing Tokyo for four days.
The basic concepts governing the selection of relay routes are as follows:
a) Areas and facilities that allow people to make new connections and friends
Places and events where people from Japan and/or overseas naturally come together, including city centres where young people in particular tend to gather, local festivals, sightseeing spots and scenic areas across the country
b) Areas and facilities where people can contribute to the realisation of a fully-inclusive society
• Places where people meet and work regardless of age, nationality, or gender; for example schools and nursing homes.
• Places where people support those with impairments, such as rehabilitation centres and facilities for persons with special needs.
c) Locations featuring the attractions of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Torch Relay
• Places with different attractions to those featuring in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Torch Relay, including locations with beautiful evening or night views.
• Facilities that support those with impairments who want to participate in sports activities, such as Sports Centres for the Disabled.
3. Overall Criteria for the Selection of Torchbearers
Three people meeting each other for the first time will come together to form teams of runners on each segment, providing a personal touch to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Torch Relay. The basic conditions governing selection of torchbearers will be as follows:
• Applicants must be born on or before 1 April 2008; the consent of a parent or guardian is required for those who will be aged 17 or under on 1 August 2020.
• Applicants of any nationality and gender will be accepted.
• Applicants must be able to carry the torch safely by themselves; however, the support of a guide runner will be allowed where necessary.
• Those applying with the objective of communicating a political or religious message will not be accepted as torchbearers.
• Those who serve as public officers under the Public Offices Election Act (members of the Diet, heads of local governments, members of local assemblies), candidates or prospective candidates for public office, and leaders of a political parties or organisations or those in equivalent positions will not be accepted.
• For religious figures or those representing religious organisations, their religious careers or achievements will have no influence on the selection process.
Other important points:
• Torchbearers may not use the Relay for advertising or publicity purposes.
• Only one person may apply per application; applications submitted by multiple persons will not be accepted.
• Torchbearers will be required to wear uniforms provided by Tokyo 2020.
• Each leg of the Torch Relay will cover approximately 200 metres, although some lengths may vary; each torchbearer may run at his or her own pace.
• Once selected, the torchbearer will be assigned the precise day and time as well as the route of his or her leg of the torch relay, which will be determined at a later date by Tokyo 2020.
• Torchbearers requiring specific equipment or devices such as wheelchairs must bring their own (apparatus to attach the torch to wheelchairs will be provided ).
• Torchbearers who require assistance may be accompanied by a guide runner.
• Torchbearers with an impairment who require assistance may be accompanied by a guide dog.
• Applicants not selected as torchbearers will not be notified that their application was unsuccessful.
• Persons who apply for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Torch Relay can also apply to participate in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Torch Relay.
4. Application Methods & Periods
Applications to the four co-hosting prefectures (Shizuoka, Chiba, Saitama and Tokyo) can be made during 16 December 2019 – 15 February 2020. Applications to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Torch Relay Presenting Partner LIXIL Corporation can be made during 27 November 2019 – 29 February 2020.
While the same individual may apply to the Presenting Partner or apply simultaneously to both the Presenting Partner and a prefecture, an individual may not apply to multiple prefectures. Regardless of the number of applications made by a single individual, he or she will only be selected to participate in the Torch Relay once overall. Each selecting entity will make their own selection in accordance with the “Basic Approach to the Selection of Individual Torchbearers” outlined below, and forward their recommendations to the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee. The 2020 Organising Committee will make the final selection of torchbearers, and announce the names in May 2020.
5. Basic Approach to the Selection of Individual Torchbearers
• A wide variety of people from different backgrounds should participate, e.g. a variety of nationalities, people with or without impairments, and those from different genders and age groups (a minimum age will be established for safety reasons) in order to promote diversity during the Relay.
• People who provide hope or support to others or who support their local communities or society at large, for example those engaging in international exchange support activities, or registered organ donors.
• Those who embody the concepts of a fully-inclusive society; for example those lead active lives regardless of any impairments or advancing years and who in their daily lives strive for the achievement of a fully inclusive society, such as athletes, musicians or artists with impairments, active seniors, those from overseas who have been successful in Japan and Japanese people who are well-known overseas.
For further details, please see the announcements by the Presenting Partner LIXIL or the local governments through which you intend to apply. These will follow in due course. For further detail information on the Paralympic Torch Relay: https://tokyo2020.org/en/special/torch/paralympic/