ECC: Join The Union, And Help Fight For A Pay Rise For Everyone

Mar 4, 2016

We deal with problems ranging from individual grievances and workplace improvements, to the major victories listed above – but this won’t continue without you joining…

This year, the two unions representing the majority of teachers have joined together, and we want 100 YEN an hour, among other things.

If we win, we ALL get it – union or otherwise.

Here are the details that you might be interested in:



We believe that ECC has the resources to increase our stagnating wages. We all work for the same company, and we won’t allow ECC to play Kanto against Kansai against Chubu, Gaigo against Kids, or Japanese against foreign. We all add to the economic fortune of the entire company, so we all deserve a pay raise at ECC.

By 2017, the consumption tax will have doubled from 5% to 10%, and our wages need to keep up. It’s just not the union saying this, either.

Keidanren, Japan’s biggest business lobby, is suggesting one-off pay increases to elevate the overall pay of workers, and the Japan Times has reported that the governor of the Bank of Japan is disappointed with unambitious salary talks.

Also, don’t forget that ECC’s policy of giving us half our pay increase as a bonus (non-accumulative) for the past two years has also hit everyone in the pocketbook.

Let’s make this year the year when we fight not just for an increase to bring us back to zero, but a pay raise that puts us ahead.



Have you ever had to take a full day’s paid leave for a simple doctor’s appointment, a visit to immigration, or an meeting at your kid’s school, even though you didn’t need the full day?

The union wants to rectify this situation by having ECC offer teachers what they currently offer those in staff positions: the right to use paid ALPs in half day increments.

We feel that it’s time to make it available to all ECC employees.

When we negotiated this issue last year, ECC management told us that when staff take a half day, they don’t need to get a sub staff to cover the shift, but teachers do need to have their half-shift covered.

Well, something being difficult to do does not make it impossible. We will be making proposals to ECC to show just how possible this is.

Let’s make sure we all benefit from improved working conditions. 



In 2012, we were able to win an agreement with ECC which granted special leave to teachers in ECC Gaigo.

Special leave covers things like days off for weddings, funerals, birth of a child, etc., and is currently available to “seishain” and “keiyakushain” (mostly staff positions). The company had basically argued that teachers – mostly “jokin koshi” – were not honest enough to use this special leave.

While we did win this right in the end, we didn’t win them as paid days, which is what other employees have.

This year, we want PAID special leave. As union members, we feel that this right needs to be made available to everyone, and that ECC should stop trying to drive a wedge between foreign teachers and Japanese staff by giving different benefits to different groups. 

We will also be dealing with…

In 2006, the union won the option for all teachers on a 29.5 hour contract to be enrolled on shakai hoken (health and pension insurance) by taking a 30 hour contract – a hard won victory!

As you may be aware, the requirements for shakai hoken enrolment will change as of October 2016.

Currently, ECC teachers on a standard 29.5 hour contract are not enrolled in shakai hoken, but this will all change very soon.

The change (as of October, 2016) will require all those working twenty plus hours per-week to be enrolled. This means that if you are one of those people who never wanted to be enrolled and stuck to your 29.5 hour contract, you will automatically be enrolled, and ECC has no choice in the matter.



For one, the union has demanded that NO CHANGES be made to any members’ working conditions unless the union agrees. Secondly, the union is demanding that no new contract be brought in unless the union approves it.

ECC has announced to the union that they intend to bring in a new full time contract for NEW HIRES and current employees who want it. We have been told that the new contract will be around 35 hours, and have been assured that it will be for more money. The union has made demands to ensure that it’s a decent increase.

Our goal is to make sure that no one is left behind by these changes. While the union in principal agrees with easier enrolment in shakai hoken, we want to ensure that current members have a voice at the table while changes are being made.

Our demands over this are very clear.



It’s simple: join the General Union, make your voice heard, and stand with us in solidarity to make sure that ECC understands that we deserve to be treated with the respect and dignity that all hard-working teachers deserve, reflective of the impact we have upon the company’s name, reputation, and business model.

People are the life-blood of any company, and ECC is no different. We want to make sure that ECC remember that simple fact, and conduct themselves accordingly.

A drop of rain in a storm might make someone wet, but a torrent of many can move mountains.


If you’re interested in joining us and taking a stand alongside over 150 of your colleages in Kanto, Chubu, and Kinki, contact the General Union at:


Alternatively, send us a message on our official Facebook page at: