After 3 rounds of talks centering around pay increases, ECC unilaterally decided to abolish Annual Pay Increases for all full-time teachers. ECC`s new proposal was to replace pay raises with One-off Lump Sum Payments. Effectively, a pay freeze for all full-timers. The union saw this as a huge sign of negotiation in bad faith, but management refused to back down. To make matters worse management tried to argue that because only 15% of teachers had voiced their concerns to the Lump Sum Payment that 85% of teachers agreed.
On Monday, May 26, the General Union declared a strike giving ECC plenty of time to negotiate. Wednesday`s 5pm deadline passed with no progress. Thursday morning ECC was given final notice that 50 teachers would strike on Saturday. ECC failed to make any concessions and teachers, trainers and personnel staff from 30 schools and 3 sections started strike action. Members headed to union rallies in Osaka and Nagoya, the biggest being outside ECC`s Osaka Headquarters in Minami-morimachi.
Membership after the strike continues to grow, and ECC has returned to the negotiation table. Union members will receive regular email updates. Not a member? Isn`t it time you joined to protect your conditions?