Night-shift post office workers to be given back pay for paid leaves

Japan Post announced to the Postal Industry Workers' Union (Yusanro) that part-time night-shift workers will be paid extra wages from April for paid leaves they use. Previously, these workers who work from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. have not been paid the legal extra wages for their annual paid holidays.

The change was brought about by the persistent struggle of Yusanro (affiliated with the National Confederation of Trade Unions [Zenroren] ) and night-shift workers.

In the announcement Japan Post states that non-full time night-shift workers will in principle be paid 130 percent of wages when they use paid holidays, that this correction will date back five years and will also be applicable to retired night-shift workers.

Yusanro has been demanding that night-shift workers be paid extra wages for their paid leaves because their routine work is at night.

After the change, a 33-year old night-shift worker with 9 years' service will be paid about 90,000 yen to cover for the last 5 years. Taking into account that there were 11,000 part-time postal workers in FY 2004, the total balance to be paid will exceed 500 million yen.

Yusanro Vice President Sunayama Yoichi said, "Japan Post should reflect on its long-time violation of the Labor Standards Law."

Article 39 of the Labor Standards Law stipulates that the employer should pay the employees the average wage for the last three months, which means inclusion of extra pay for night work for those who used to do night work. (end)

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