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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 February 1 - 7  > Unions ready for this year’s spring labor-management wage negotiations
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2017 February 1 - 7 TOP3 [LABOR]

Unions ready for this year’s spring labor-management wage negotiations

February 2, 2017
Labor unions working closely together in Tokyo gathered at a rally on January 31 and resolved to win substantial pay hikes and stable jobs in the coming spring labor-management wage bargaining negotiations (Spring Offensive or Shunto).

President of the Tokyo Regional Council of Trade Unions (Tokyo Chihyo) Morita Minoru gave a speech on behalf of the rally organizer Tokyo Spring Struggle Joint Conference. He pointed out that both wages and household consumption have been on a downward trend, and that the International Labor Organization (ILO) also notes the need for Japan to push up overall wages.

Morita criticized Prime Minister Abe Shinzo for boasting of an ostensible economic growth by only using certain statistical figures. He called on all union members to increase the cooperation among unionized workers, concerned citizens, and opposition parties in order to bring down the Abe government.

President of the National Confederation of Trade Unions (Zenroren) Odagawa Yoshikazu, representing the People’s Spring Struggle Joint Committee, said that large corporations as their social responsibility should use some of their vast internal reserves to improve the situation facing workers and subcontractors.

A member of the Japan Federation of Publishing Workers’ Unions (Shuppan-roren) reported on economic hardships of her/his coworkers who only receive an hourly wage of 900 yen and expressed enthusiasm for achieving a minimum hourly wage of 1,500 yen. Workers’ voices this person quoted included: I cannot save any money; I cannot even afford to buy a mobile phone; and I have no money to return home to visit my mom at the hospital.

A representative of the All Tokyo Teachers and Staffs Union (Tokyouso) cited an example of “maternity harassment” at a school: The school principal intimidated female teachers by saying, “The school will have a lot of trouble if you become pregnant. This is why women are useless at work.” The Tokyouso member expressed determination to work to achieve a better work environment and a stronger union.

Past related articles:
> Zenroren resolves to fight for substantial wage hikes for all workers [January 26 & 27, 2017]
> 2017 spring struggle for 20,000 yen monthly wage hike begins [January 19 & 20, 2017]
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