Louis Carlet and Hifumi Okunuki present the seven legal principles and three law court precedents that you should know.
From the Begunto Website:
On September 14th Begunto entered dispute after weeks of negotiations that went nowhere. On September 16th we had our first striking member. The purpose of the strike is to realize the Union’s demand that our member, Matthew Wiegand, be reinstated in his job. We aim to protect members against unfair dismissals.
A message from Tozen Union President, Okunuki Hifumi, (16 September 2021):
Today, 13 years after its founding and now part of Tozen Union, our local Begunto has begun a new fight – this time not for more money but rather to protect the job of one of our members. At 7:40 pm this evening, our member Yancey walked off the job – on strike to push Berlitz management to reinstate our member Matt Wiegand.
Begunto (Berlitz General Union Tokyo) has a history going back to 1994, the year of its founding (then part of NUGW Tokyo Nambu). Over the next 27 years, Begunto has blazed a wide trail for language teachers in Japan, with enormous victories that changed the language school industry. In 2007, the union launched an intense, twelve-month strike to raise wages across the board by 4.6%, something unheard of among any teacher unions, let alone one with mostly foreign teachers. Berlitz Japan made two offers, but Begunto rejected them as too little. (See the wikipedia entry for this historic strike)
This fight is Tozen Union’s fight as much as Begunto’s fight. We will fight together to protect all our members’ job from reckless firings like this one. We will update you on events that all Tozen members can join to help us win.
Tozen Union Executive President
On Friday 30th July 2021, members of Tozen held a candle-lit online protest calling for the cancellation of the Tokyo Olympics.
As a labour union we fight for workers’ rights, and worker safety. And the Tokyo Olympics has had numerous counts of worker deaths and injuries, and workers have reported a “culture of fear” that discouraged them from making complaints about working conditions.
Another major reason that we do not support the Olympics is that the world is currently in the midst of a global pandemic. Corona cases in Japan have been constantly rising and dropping, and with no large-scale vaccination in sight, going ahead with the olympics would be an unnecessary risk to all.
Other reasons that we oppose the Tokyo Olympics are:
- Financial costs
- Loss of homes
- Reports of corruption and bribery
- The militarisation of the police
- Unsafe temperatures.
Tozen, and our President Okunuki Hifumi, have been mentioned in the following article by Mieko Takenobu about the difficulties that Filipino domestic workers have.
SNA (Tokyo) — Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone died this past November 29. During his tenure as prime minister from 1982 to 1987, he had deepened Japan’s subordination to the US hegemon through his Ron-Yasu Bromance with President Ronald Reagan. But to one middle and high schooler in the 1980s, he seemed to be the first prime minister to hold his own in friendly talks with the United States, almost as an equal.
Welcoming in the Reiwa era and the new President of Shane, Ishitani Yuya, Shane Workers’ Union are pleased to sign a Labour Management Agreement in what is hoped to be a new phase of improved relations between the Union and the Company.
The agreement guarantees the working conditions of union members and agrees to use Company paperwork when converting to permanent employment.
The agreement also defines a set of rules for collective bargaining which lays the groundwork for improved negotiations and a more timely and forthcoming approach from management.
While some issues remain unresolved, notably the official labour dispute and charges of unfair labour practices against union members, this agreement is a very positive step forward and the Union believes it is only a matter of time before a suitable settlement is negotiated and normal labour-management relations restored.
Full video of the Tozen/Chomsky summit in March, 2014.