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HOME  > Past issues  > 2016 November 2 - 8  > Dentsu raided over violation of work hour rules
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2016 November 2 - 8 [LABOR]

Dentsu raided over violation of work hour rules

November 8, 2016
Labor law enforcement officers and special overtime work inspectors on November 7 raided Dentsu Inc’s headquarters in Tokyo and its offices in Nagoya, Osaka, and Kyoto due to suspicion of violations of regulations on working hours.

The advertising giant also underwent labor ministry inspections on the same issue two weeks before.

These moves were prompted by the fact that the suicide of an overworked 24-year-old female Dentsu employee at the end of 2015 was recognized as work-related.

The woman worked more than 130 hours of overtime on a monthly basis. However, she was forced to underreport the amount of overtime she actually worked. The company’s act of pressuring the worker to report a smaller number of overtime hours than the actual number violates work hours rules set under Article 32 of the Labor Standards Act. The labor law enforcement authority suspects that many Dentsu workers are forced to do the same as the woman worker did. It will send its reports on Dentsu’s illegal overtime scheme to public prosecutors after confirming the violation.

Later on the same day, Dentsu President and CEO Ishii Tadashi explained to workers about the labor authority’s inspections and the company’s response. However, he said nothing about the woman worker’s suicide.

The Japanese Communist Party in 2000 in the Diet took up the issue of excessive overtime work at Dentsu. Then JCP Secretariat Head Shii Kazuo, the present JCP Chair, cited the fact that a 24-year-old male Denstu worker committed suicide due to overwork. Shii demanded that the Labor Ministry require all companies to manage workers’ working hours legally.

The following year, the ministry issued a directive which obliges employers to record workers’ working hours through objective means, such as the use of worktime recording machines.

Past related articles:
> Dentsu was certified as ‘worker-friendly company’ [October 26, 2016]
> Eliminate overwork driving workers to death [October 12, 2016]
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