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HOME  > Past issues  > 2007 February 14 - 20  > Isuzu workers request labor ministry to instruct Isuzu to offer stable long-term jobs
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2007 February 14 - 20 [LABOR]

Isuzu workers request labor ministry to instruct Isuzu to offer stable long-term jobs

February 20, 2007
Workers working on short-term contracts at Isuzu Motors Limited visited the Health, Labor, and Welfare Ministry on February 19 to demand that the ministry instruct Isuzu to hire workers on stable long-term contracts instead of repeated short-term contract renewals.

The workers said to ministry officials, “We are afraid of possible termination of our contracts. Many of us live in Isuzu dormitories. If our contracts are terminated, we will lose even our place to live in.”

They also said, “Despite the fact that there is a lot of work to do and demand for overtime work everyday, Isuzu does not offer us stable long-term jobs because it is advantageous for them to be able to terminate our contracts whenever they want and not pay us bonuses if our contracts expire.”

In conformity with the Worker Dispatch Law, Isuzu has hired 1,500 temporary workers who had previously worked for more than a year at the company. However, the carmaker plans to continue the practice of renewing their contracts every two months.

The workers argued that repeated short-term contracts is a violation of the Worker Dispatch Law that requires employers to directly hire temps after using them for a period of one year, and called on the labor ministry to instruct Isuzu to comply with this law.

However, the ministry in reply said, “The ministry will not instruct companies based on the Worker Dispatch Law.”

The workers said that the response contradicts the labor minister’s previous stand that employers are required to offer workers long-term contracts. The ministry officials did not respond to this point.

They also complained that bonuses they receive at the expiration of their contracts are drastically cut because their contract period became shorter.

At Isuzu, contract workers each receive a bonus of 420,000 yen if they work for six months without absence. Accordingly, a worker who works for ten months should receive 590,000 yen, but the worker actually receives 350,000 yen because his contract has been cut to a 4-month contract plus three 2-month contracts.

Japanese Communist Party former House of Representatives member Omori Takeshi and a secretary of JCP House of Councilors member Koike Akira were present at the workers’ representations to the labor ministry.
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