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HOME  > Past issues  > 2016 November 16 - 22  > 4 opposition parties jointly propose bill to prevent excessive working hours
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2016 November 16 - 22 [LABOR]

4 opposition parties jointly propose bill to prevent excessive working hours

November 16, 2016
The Japanese Communist Party and the three other opposition parties on November 15 jointly submitted a bill to revise the Labor Standards Law to the House of Representatives with the aim of tightening the rules on overtime.

This action was made in response to the fact that a young woman worker at Japan’s giant ad agency Dentsu committed suicide after suffering excessive overwork.

Under the current law, an employer who unlawfully forces employees to work overtime will face imprisonment of “up to six months” or a fine of “up to 300,000 yen”. The opposition parties-proposed bill stipulates that the employer be jailed for “up to one year” or be fined “up to 500,000 yen”.

The bill also imposes a legal limit on overtime hours without exception and requires employers to place intervals long enough for workers to recover their strength between work shifts.

At a joint news conference after the submission, JCP lawmaker Takahashi Chizuko stressed, “The case of Dentsu is just the tip of the iceberg. In order to eliminate death from overwork, it is essential to legally restrict working hours.”

Democratic Party legislator Isaka Nobuhiko said, “The ruling parties should cooperate with the opposition parties to discuss this bill in the current Diet session.”
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