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HOME  > Past issues  > 2011 September 7 - 13  > Workers suffering under NPP money
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2011 September 7 - 13 [NUCLEAR CRISIS]

Workers suffering under NPP money

September 4, 2011
Structure of reliance on NPP money (Part 3)

An ex-NPP worker (65) at Kansai Electric Power Co. (KEPCO) Mihama nuclear power plant in Fukui Prefecture said that he used to be told by the foreman not to come to work anymore when his radiation dose exceeded the standard.

This is because the blame falls on the subcontractor company when their workers are exposed to radiation. “There were no human rights for workers,” he said.

When he was working at a taxi company, employees objecting to nuclear power generation used to be threatened by their superior with dismissal. He said, “Our boss kept telling us, ‘KEPCO’ is our biggest customer. If you express any criticism, you will be fired’.”

In Takahama Town where the Takahama NPP is located, harassment of residents who were against nuclear reactors was an everyday occurrence. Those who signed anti-NPP campaigns were coerced to have their signatures deleted.

Gangsters as go-betweens

NPP projects involving large sums of money attract underworld people. Recruiters of NPP workmen take advantage of impoverished people.

An ex-gangster who was sending in workmen to the Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) Fukushima NPP testified that he had been requested to recruit 10-15 laborers, sometimes 20. He said that the catchwords of “10,000-20,000 yen per day for an easy job” easily attracted workers. “One time I sent a man who had a debt of 40 million yen,” he said.

Young temporary workers who have been dismissed from their jobs are also targeted.

A man of 33 said, “A friend of mine was dismissed from his temporary job and became an NPP worker with the mediation of a gangster organization. He has a contract with the subcontractor company, but he receives his wages through the gangster organization. The power company says it pays each worker 30,000 yen per day, but he only receives 8,000 yen. It is obvious kickbacks are rampant.”

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