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HOME  > Past issues  > 2013 February 20 - 26  > Employers move to terminate employment contracts before labor law revised
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2013 February 20 - 26 [LABOR]

Employers move to terminate employment contracts before labor law revised

February 22, 2013
Japanese Communist Party Upper House member Tamura Tomoko on February 21 disclosed state universities’ moves to change their work rules in anticipation of new regulations on employment of non-regular workers scheduled to be enforced in April.

The revised Labor Contract Law requires employers to offer an open-ended contract to workers who have worked more than 5 years if they so wish. The new regulation will come into effect on April 1.

At a House of Councilors Budget Committee meeting, Tamura revealed that Osaka University has just changed its work rules and has imposed a limit of five years to the term of work contracts with non-regular workers.

Due to the new rules in the university, part-time teachers who have taught language classes for more than 10 years will be dismissed, and researchers will have to suspend their 10-year projects, such as on iPS cells, after 5 years. The JCP representative stressed that this will create a significant adverse effect on academic education and research.

Pointing out that more than half of college staff, teachers, and researchers are employed on fixed-term contracts, Tamura stated that the revised law will lead to a sweeping reshuffle of part-time workers by March 2018 and thus cause major confusion in Japanese universities.

Education Minister Shimomura Hakubun responded to Tamura by saying that he will instruct universities to appropriately apply the regulation in order to avoid an across-the-board termination of employment.
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