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HOME  > Past issues  > 2008 May 21 - 27  > Contingent workers in rally call for better working conditions
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2008 May 21 - 27 [LABOR]

Contingent workers in rally call for better working conditions

May 25, 2008
About 450 contingent workers took part in a national rally in Sendai City on May 24 on the struggle to overcome widespread poverty, economic inequalities, and improve their working conditions.

The National Confederation of Trade Unions (Zenroren) sponsored the rally for part-time and temporary workers.

Japan Federation of Prefectural and Municipal Workers' Unions (Jichiroren) Vice Chair Kawanishi Reiko said that 1,000,000 part-time and temporary workers on local-government related jobs are classified as ‘working poor’ as they are paid lower than private sector workers and are treated as ‘disposable’ workers.

She said, “It is unreasonable that local governments limit the terms of employment, although there are no limits to jobs.”

Pointing out that contingent workers are losing not only the desire to work but also their dignity and pride, Sunohara Yusaku, an NHK chief producer of the feature TV program “Working Poor”, emphasized how important it is for workers to unite in the struggle.

Part-time and temporary workers at the rally spoke about their struggles.

A contingent worker at a child care center in Nakano Ward, Tokyo, spoke about their struggle that led to their reinstatement to the workplace by forcing the local government to withdraw their dismissals as part of a cost-cutting outsourcing of their jobs.

A representative of non-regular workers working for Ishinomaki City, Miyagi Prefecture, said that they achieved an improvement in their working conditions and a cancellation of the city government’s plan to transfer non-regular workers to a temporary staffing agency. - Akahata, May 25, 2008
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