Japan Press Weekly
[Advanced search]
Past issues
Special issues
Fact Box
Feature Articles
Mail to editor
Mail magazine
HOME  > Past issues  > 2023 August 30 - September 5  > Akahata editor in people's movements: all workers have right to strike
> List of Past issues
Bookmark and Share
2023 August 30 - September 5 TOP3 [LABOR]

Akahata editor in people's movements: all workers have right to strike

September 2, 2023

A UA Zensen-affiliated labor union of major department store operator Sogo-Seibu went on strike on August 31 at the Seibu flagship store in Tokyo.

Union members protested against the planned selling of department stores to another company without a guarantee of business continuation. They demanded that their jobs be protected.

Regardless of trade union affiliations or political beliefs, many labor unions, various organizations, and concerned consumers supported the strike in solidarity.

Article 28 of the Japanese Constitution stipulates, "The right of workers to organize and to bargain and act collectively is guaranteed."

Since workers suspend their services all at once, a strike causes a significant impact on many people's lives and economic activities. Nevertheless, the Constitution guarantees the right to strike. It is because, workers in a capitalist society are placed in the position subservient to capitalists and therefore it is essential for workers to take industrial action or go on strike in order to improve their working conditions to get their fair share in wages and benefits. The right to strike itself is a right which workers of the world won through struggle.

A strike is the most powerful negotiation tool for workers. For this reason, business leaders in cooperation with the Japanese government try hard to intervene in the trade union movement and to prevent strikes from taking place. The number of strikes has continued to decline since its peak of 10,462 strikes in 1974 in Japan. Only 270 strikes took place in 2022.

Affiliated with the National Confederation of Trade Unions (Zenroren) or backed by the People's Spring Struggle Joint Committee, in the latest spring wage offensive, 1,529 unions established the right to go on strike, and 341 unions actually went on strike 405 times.

Only with a united effort of workers can they achieve momentum to increase their wages, shorten their working hours, improve their working conditions, and maintain their jobs. Strikes, if flourishing nationwide, will open up new avenues which meet many workers' demands.
> List of Past issues
  Copyright (c) Japan Press Service Co., Ltd. All right reserved