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Sunday, May 2, 2010

May Day

May Day was held all over Japan on May 1st.

Most labor unions are enterprise unions in Japan, and they are federated by industrial sector. Many conpanies replaced full-time employees with part-time and temporary workers to hold down labor costs since the regulations on temporary workers was eliminated during the prolonged recession that followed the collapse of the economic bubble of the 1990s.

Few companies have a policy of equal pay for equal jobs.
As a result, part-timers and other non-regulars have come to account for a third of the labor force and the unions have weakened.

Japan has no layoff system like that in the United States. Even now, many companies keep employees on the payroll unless they retired of their own will and don't cut their pay unless their companies are on the brink of bankruptcy.

Meanwhile, companies can terminate the temporary contracts of temporary workers according to companies' convenience.
A company refused the employees' demand for wage increases when it posted record profits, but it laid off temporary workers before it became in the red. Another company terminated the contracts of temporary workers who had been working there for ten years because it was sued for direct employment by such people.

Now, it's possible for part-time and temporary workers to join a labor union named Zenkoku Union(Japan Community Union Federation), and its members staged a march.

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