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HOME  > Past issues  > 2021 June 2 - 8  > Parents of Toyota worker who committed suicide after workplace harassment win out-of-court settlement
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2021 June 2 - 8 [LABOR]

Parents of Toyota worker who committed suicide after workplace harassment win out-of-court settlement

June 8, 2021

Akahata on June 7 learned that the bereaved family of a male Toyota worker who committed suicide after experiencing power harassment from his boss concluded an out-of-court settlement with the car manufacturer in April.

The deceased worker in April 2015 entered Toyota Motor Corporation after finishing the master’s program at the University of Tokyo. In April 2016, he began experiencing power harassment from his boss, such as verbal abuse and brutal tongue-lashings. Six months later, after taking a leave of absence due to mental health problems, he was assigned to a different section. However, his desk was very close to his former boss, which imposed a severe mental stress on him. In October 2017, suffering from mental distress, he killed himself at the age of 28.

In September 2019, in response to a complaint filed by the bereaved family of the worker, a labor law enforcement office in Aichi’s Toyota City recognized the worker’s suicide as work-related as it was caused by the excessive power harassment by his boss.

Following the out-of-court settlement, Toyota President Toyota Akio offered his apologies to the bereaved family. The company admitted to its failure to fulfill its duty to provide a safe work environment and paid the settlement money to the bereaved (the amount of the money was not disclosed). In addition, the company announced that it implemented measures to prevent recurrences of such a tragedy which include a revision of the company’s work rules to punish those who commit power harassment.

The parents of the deceased worker issued a comment via their lawyer and said that they hope Toyota has learned lessons from their son’s case and improves the company’s measures to protect its workers from occupational hazards.

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