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HOME  > Past issues  > 2020 September 16 - 29  > Union and JCP efforts lead to extension of COVID-19 grants to small firm workers
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2020 September 16 - 29 [LABOR]

Union and JCP efforts lead to extension of COVID-19 grants to small firm workers

September 27, 2020

Pressed by several trade unions and Japanese Communist Party lawmakers, the government has decided to extend for three months the period of business suspension to be covered by COVID-19 grants for small- and medium-sized enterprise workers who are left without closure allowance.

The Labor and Welfare Ministry announced the extension of the period on September 25.

The applicable business suspension period was from April until September 30 initially, but it will be changed to until December 31. The deadline to apply for the grants will also be extended to March 31 of next year.

This grant program provides SME workers, who were or have been on leave under the order of their employers but whose closure allowances were not paid or have not been paid by their employers, with 80% of what they earned before business suspensions (or up to 11,000 yen a day).

Some workers cannot apply for COVID-19 benefits because their employers insist that they are not suspending their businesses. Labor unions and the JCP laid this fact on the Labor and Welfare Ministry, extracting an answer, "If business operation is suspended in effect, labor authorities will determine the situation to be a business suspension."

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