Women group's survey discloses facts of unpaid overtime work

A recent survey shows that one out of every six Japanese workers is obliged to work more than 30 hours of unpaid overtime work each month.

The New Japan Women's Association (NJWA) on March 29 published findings from its survey on unpaid overtime work by its members and their family members.

The survey conducted last September was responded to by 2,853 people.

Some 54 percent of the respondents said they worked overtime hours unpaid, and about one-third of them said they worked more than 30 hours a month for nothing.

The worst was the cases of women with sons in their twenties. It turned out that nearly one half of such women went through more than 30 hours of unpaid overtime work every month.

Asked about reasons for such unpaid work, 21 percent said "the length of overtime and amount of money paid for overwork are already fixed," and 20 percent said, "It is not easy to apply for paid overtime work."

Some respondents complained that workloads are increasing while the workforce is decreasing. Another described his condition as being oppressed psychologically because of his position in which he has to proceed with corporate restructuring.
At a Diet committee meeting on March 29, Inoue Miyo, the NJWA president and Japanese Communist Party member of the House of Councilors, requested that the government direct employers to give their employees a free access to a book of records kept by employers for their workers' wage calculations. (end)