Workers to strike back at Fuji Film's union-busting tactic disguised as bankruptcy

Fuji Photo Film, the world's second largest film maker, in March dissolved subsidiary Shizuoka Fuji Color in a disguised bankruptcy. Sacking more than 70 employees, the subsidiary transferred its operations to Fuji Color Mishima, another subsidiary in Shizuoka Prefecture.

Workers of Shizuoka Fuji Color, who are union members, refused to accept the dismissal notices and rose to demand their jobs be secured in Fuji Color Mishima.

The signboard of Shizuoka Fuji Color was changed overnight from "Shizuoka Fuji Color" to "Fuji Color Mishima," but its business is actually what Shizuoka Fuji Color was doing, printing color films and selling machines for development.

Though Fuji Color Mishima refuses to hire former Shizuoka Fuji Color workers, it employed 32 new workers, which clearly shows that the transfer of operations was a means of dismissing workers.

Takamatsu Ryuji, Shizuoka Fuji Color union member, said, "The bankruptcy of Shizuoka Fuji Color and the dismissing of its workers was intended to bar members of the Shizuoka Fuji Color workers' union which is 30 years old. The union served to defend the rights of the workers."

Fuji Color Mishima does not allow a union.

The Shizuoka Fuji Color union in March filed a lawsuit with the Shizuoka District Court calling for the union to be protected. It also called on the Shizuoka District Labor Relations Commission to rule the dismissal order null and void.

The workers called on Chemical Workers Union Federation to support them and asked a university professor to analyze the company's financial reports. The court heard that the bankruptcy was a disguise.

Union members also had meetings with the Japanese Communist Party.

Oki Takao, Shizuoka Fuji Color union leader, said, "If we step back, Fuji Film subsidiary workers across Japan will be vulnerable to the company attack."

Fuji Photo Film has a 70 percent share in Japan's color film market, and its TV commercials say "Fuji film is best to record scenes of a happy life." (end)