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HOME  > Past issues  > 2020 March 4 - 10  > Temporary workers on 'unpaid' standby due to corona outbreak win 'paid' work
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2020 March 4 - 10 TOP3 [LABOR]

Temporary workers on 'unpaid' standby due to corona outbreak win 'paid' work

March 9, 2020
At the request of the Japan Federation of Prefectural and Municipal Workers' Unions (Jichiroren) and a local workers' union, an order given on March 2 to 47 temporary employees of public school lunch centers to stand by at home due to the new coronavirus outbreak changed from being on standby "without pay" to being assigned to other duties during the period of school closure.

In collaboration with the Hyogo Prefectural Jichiroren, the school cooks' union in Sanda City (Hyogo Pref.) pressed the Sanda City government to comply with Article 26 of the Labor Standards Act stipulating "the principle of compensation of benefits for absence from work" and to retract the "unpaid" standby order.

In the negotiation with the city authority, they claimed that the ongoing school closure is attributable to the central and municipal governments and that the Labor Standards Act Article 26 stipulates, "In the event of an absence from work for reasons attributable to the employer, the employer shall pay an allowance equal to at least 60 percent of the worker's average wage to each worker concerned during the period of absence from work."

Tsukada Hiroko, the school cooks' union head, said, "I'm glad that our request will be fulfilled."

Tanaka Tatsuo, Hyogo Prefectural Jichiroren officer in charge of Sanda City areas, said, "The school closure began with Prime Minister Abe's decision. Temporary employees, not responsible for the reduced work days, will suffer income cuts that will severely affect family budgets." Tanaka added, "These past few days, together with them, I talked with officials of the city authority. Through the negotiations, I became convinced anew of the importance of the presence of the union."

Past related article:
> Abe should listen to experts sincerely in efforts to contain new coronavirus [ March 3, 2020]

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