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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 January 11 - 17  > ‘Evil corporation award’-winning company takes it out on union
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2017 January 11 - 17 [LABOR]

‘Evil corporation award’-winning company takes it out on union

January 13 and 14, 2017
A printing company winning an “evil corporation award” last year is venting its anger on a labor union.

At the end of last year, Printpac Corporation, a Kyoto-based printing company, received the award of the “Most Evil Corporation of the Year” in the printing sector by getting “credit” for its excessively long working hours and wage discrimination against union officials. Enraged by this, the firm on January 11 ordered the union leader to appear for a meeting in the executive room.

The order said that the winning of the award has “ruined the company’s reputation” and “adversely affected business performance”. It accused the branch leader by saying, “We suspect that you worked on the selection committee to give the prize to our company.”

On January 12, the local and the Kyoto prefectural chapter of the General Federation of Japan Printing and Publishing Workers’ Unions (Zen’in-soren) lodged a written protest with the company. The protest notice points out that “the summoning of the union leader on groundless suspicion is a threat to the union and constitutes an unfair labor practice.”

The firm makes employees work 12 hours in a row under a two-shift system. No matter how many hours of overtime they work, workers only receive a tiny fixed amount of overtime pay. To improve such poor working conditions, the union local has led a campaign demanding shorter working hours and full payment for overtime work. As a warning to other employees, the management de facto stopped raising wages for two union officials, including the branch leader. In July 2016, in response to the union complaint, the Kyoto Labor Relations Commission recognized the wage discrimination against the two workers as an unfair labor practice.

***

On January 13, the day Akahata reported this event, Printpac canceled its order and announced that it will neither have a personal interview with the branch leader nor give him punishment.

The company added that it has confirmed that the union was not involved in the firm’s receipt of the disgraceful award.

Past related article:
> Workers at major online printing company form union local [March 2, 2014]
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