On behalf of all teachers, the General Union strongly protested the newsletter, insisting that Interac swiftly issue both a retraction and a general statement informing teachers of their actual rights.
While somewhat disingenuously played down as a “misunderstanding”, the General Union is pleased to report that an apology was issued last week – the contents of which can be seen here:
I have been forwarded a copy of a newsletter that was sent by one of our Head Teachers in Miyagi-ken on Tuesday afternoon.
This Newsletter had some information that was highlighted to me as a concern. I’d like to correct the statements of concern to avoid any further misunderstanding.
**** “No Reports, No Pay” ****
I’d like to reassure everyone that that is not the case.
As we have spoken about in initial and ongoing trainings, it is correct that many BoEs use the Report Sheet of Work and Reports as a kind of receipt or proof that the work they have contracted for has been completed. As such, missing, late or inaccurate reports could delay our invoicing and payments processes.
However, that is for the Interac and the BoE to worry about, not an individual ALT. The terms and conditions of your employment, payment of salary, managing your schedule etc. are governed by your employment contract with Interac, not billing processes with our BoEs.
A late report or other discrepancy does not mean your salary will be automatically withheld. If a report is late or incorrect, we will first work with you to identify the cause of the problem. If there is something the office can do to support you in meeting your reporting responsibilities, we will do so. If the problem persists, we may need to consider action to take. On occasion it may be necessary for us to consider a warning letter or other disciplinary action.
Lastly, it is not necessary for you to check up on your co-workers. Delays in their reports will not impact the payment of your salary. If an employee is having issues with the required reports, the office staff will work with that person to correct the issue and get things running smoothly again.
On behalf of the branch, I apologize for the confusion that the newsletter may have caused.
While the General Union is satisfied that a retraction was issued, there are two important points to keep in mind:
• The contents of the newsletter should have never been written to begin with.
• Had the General Union not taken action, the contents of the newsletter would have been allowed to stand without correction, and a number of teachers would have assumed that the lies were in fact the truth coming from an official company source.
Remember: knowledge is power. Learn your rights so that ignorant people in positions of power can’t take them away from you.
Email us: alt(at)generalunion.org