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HOME  > Past issues  > 2007 November 28 - December 4  > Rally held in Tokyo demanding government redress discrimination against 1,047 railway workers
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2007 November 28 - December 4 [LABOR]

Rally held in Tokyo demanding government redress discrimination against 1,047 railway workers

December 1, 2007
A national rally was held on November 30 in Tokyo demanding an early settlement of a case of discrimination against 1,047 former Japanese National Railways (JNR) workers based on their union membership.

When the JNR was privatized and broken up into Japan Railway (JR) companies 20 years ago, the successor companies refused to employ these former JNR workers who wanted to be employed because they were members of the National Railway Workers Union (NRU or Kokuro) or some other unions.

With the Tokyo District Court ruling expected early next year, about 7,300 people, including workers in dispute, their family members, and supporters took part in the rally.

The All National Railway Locomotive Engineers’ Union (Zendoro)’s group of plaintiffs, the NRU, and the All Japan Construction, Transport and General Workers Union (CTG or Kenkoro) and several other groups of plaintiffs sponsored the rally.

The appeal adopted by the rally said that the government should make every effort to settle the dispute.

NRU President Takahashi Shinji said that 730 local assemblies throughout the country have adopted resolutions calling on the government to “act without delay to settle this dispute.”

Zendoro’s Kudo Hiroshi said, “Winning a victorious ruling will help to force the JR companies to end their policy that compromises passenger and worker safety.”

Representatives of the Japanese Communist, Democratic, and Social Democratic parties attended the rally and spoke. JCP Diet Policy Committee Chair Kokuta Keiji said, “Settlement of this dispute must not be delayed any longer because this is a humanitarian question. The government must bear responsibility for the settlement.”

After the rally, participants marched in demonstration to Tokyo Station.
- Akahata, December 1, 2007
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