Following the recent debacle of NOVA snatching the Sapporo city contract from under Interac’s feet, only to subsequently lose it again a month later, teachers caught in the fallout were sent to other parts of Japan to work for between two-to-four weeks (ostensibly to stall for time until NOVA could decide what to do with them).
Far away from their often snowy homes in Hokkaido, teachers found themselves being put up in hotels, tasked with handing out tissues to bemused Japanese salary-men, and moved from location to location as NOVA’s fickle whims demanded, all while having to traipse from one hotel to another on their days off.
To add further insult to injury, although businesses usually pay a daily expense allowance to cover meals and other miscellanea related to such travelling around, NOVA decided that would only pay 1500 yen per day to the people it was shuffling around. Such a paltry amount hardly covers breakfast in Tokyo, let alone lunch and dinner as well.
In a group meeting, teachers demanded that management explain to them how they were supposed to eat on 1500 per day.
The manager replied that they could save money by eating cup noodles in their hotel rooms.
Suffice to say, teachers were outraged at NOVA’s condescending apathy (and rightly so!).
In reaction to this news, the General Union submitted demands to NOVA and negotiated that the allowance be raised.
While we aren’t happy with the result, we were able to get the allowance raised from 1500 yen to 2000 yen per day, which – as a start – is better than nothing.
The union still believes this amount is inadequate and will be pressing for more.