The Abe government has presented a controversial bill with an intention of law enforcement in April 2015, but the plan is likely to be shelved in the current session of the Diet. It is a bill to revise the Worker Dispatching Act. The revision is to render permanently employed workers to being temporary staffs. Such an illegitimate law must be repealed and the Dispatching Act itself must be abrogated.
ABANDON A BILL TO MAKE WORKER BE TEMPORARY STAFF!
Prime Minister Abe Shinzo proclaims that Japan should make a nation where business could enjoy the highest terms to operate. He visited London early May and told, referring to deregulation of labor rules, that ‘in order to raise productivity under the condition of population decline, it is necessary to change labor laws by which flexible working patterns may be created’.
He added, saying that ‘Japan could not grow unless this kind of change should be made. I will do my best to attain the goal’. Premier had given instructions to the Advisory Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy and the Council for Industrial Competitiveness to reexamine deregulation of working hours and introduction of foreign workers into the elderly care industries and housekeeping jobs. Results will be incorporated into his New Growth Strategy to be compiled in June.
Worker Remains Temporary Staff until Retirement Age
Premier Abe commented in London in the context of working hours and he expressed his decision to ‘introduce a flexible working hour system’. His government is, in the same context, to revise the Worker Dispatching Act as the Cabinet made a decision March 11 to propose to the Diet.
The current dispatching law has a provision to limit a period of employment. A dispatching company can employ a worker for one year as a rule and in the maximum for three years in an identical workplace (except for 26 kinds of jobs which need special skills, including a translator and a secretary). An amendment is to lift this boundary.
If the law is revised, a dispatching employer could use workers freely without a time limit, if a worker has a contract on the basis of an indefinite term. If a worker contracts on the definite basis, a dispatching employer could continue to use him/her by replacing with another in compliance with opinions of a labor union. The current provision on exception would be removed.
Currently works a rule of ‘prevention of replacement of a regular worker with a temporary staff’. A dispatched work is limited to jobs of a temporary or provisional character. But the bill is to undermine the practice. A limit is on the dispatching period, and therefore an employer could enjoy favorable conditions. In fact dispatching workers will increase infinitely.
The government enhances merits, saying ‘women, senior citizens and young people could work in diversified ways’. That means a worker will be obliged to work as a temporary worker until his/her death. Desperate voices are heard; ‘I am not a rented item of merchandise. I do not want to be robbed of a hope by the aggravated law’.
Let’s Enhance Joint Actions!
The ruling parties have decided to shelve the bill during the current Diet session because reactions and criticisms from workers are very strong and opposition parties are adamant. Furthermore errors have been found one after another in the bills presented by the Ministry of Health Labor and Welfare. The government estimated that Diet debates will not be successful.
A labor-civic group, ‘Joint Action to Object Destruction of Employment by Abe Government’, which consists of the Zenrokyo (=National Trade Union Council) and civic organizations is scheduled to stage protest campaigns on June 5 around the Diet building with slogans of ‘Objections! Indefinite dispatching period, NO! Zero payment for overtime work, NO! Worsening of Labor Laws, NO!’
It is a critical moment for us to commit in campaigns to demand abrogation of the laws in the united actions.
June 3, 2014