Japan Press Weekly
Japan Press Service Co., Ltd. is the only news agency providing information of progressive, democratic movements in Japan
Google Our Site:

Japan Press Weekly www

Bill to improve unemployment insurance law approved by Lower House committee

The House of Representatives on March 19 approved a bill to revise the unemployment insurance law after amending the original text. It is expected to be enacted during the current Diet session.

The revision is intended to improve the present situation in which 80 percent of the unemployed are not entitled to unemployment benefits.

Under the present law, a person who lost his or her job can receive unemployment benefits if he or she has paid unemployment insurance premiums for at least a year.

The present bill proposes shortening the required length of premium payments to six months.

The committee amended the bill so that the revised law will be implemented from March 31 instead of April 1, the first day of the new fiscal year, because the number of the jobless is likely increase at the end of March.

The Japanese Communist Party has been calling for the discriminatory treatment regarding the eligibility and amounts of payment based on reasons for job losses to be eliminated.

The committee on March 18 unanimously approved a supplemental resolution stating, "Efforts should be made to apply the unemployment insurance to all workers. The further relaxation of requirements for the unemployment benefit should be considered in order to fulfill and strengthen the insurance function as a safety net for contingent workers. Careful examinations of reasons for leaving jobs are necessary so that appropriate responses can be made."

The government submission of the bill to revise the unemployment insurance law reflects the JCP calls and the people's demands. When the situation regarding jobs will worsen toward the end of March, the government must take the supplementary decision seriously and take positive measures to deal with the situation.

- Akahata, March 19, 2009

Copyright © Japan Press Service Co., Ltd. All right reserved