GU vs Doshisha in the News Across Japan

Aug 13, 2021

Between 12 and 13 August about 45 websites carried two Kyodo News stories outlining General Union plans to sue Doshisha University “Doshisha University: 30% reduction in salary for 60-year-old foreign associate professor goes to Labour Tribunal“, and Doshisha Girls Junior and Senior High School, “Doshisha teachers request corrective guidance from the Labor Standards Inspection Office over ‘unpaid wages‘”

The articles outline the problems faced by General Union members and the union’s plans to bring suit against Doshisha Educational Corporation on 19 August. On the same day the union will also file three separate unfair labour practices suits against the school for unequal treatment of union members and refusal to negotiate with the union.

The union hopes to bring an end to wage discrimination against older workers. There is much misunderstanding about this problem especially as it applies to non tenured teachers who do not receive big retirement allowances. This pay cut was suffered by a contracted teacher limited to five years of employment in the middle of the contract. Taking a 30% pay cut and doing the same job is an affront to all ideas of fairness. Doshisha negotiators themselves even said that they believe that their working regulations could be outdated.

We also hope to bring attention to the problems faced by part time teachers at elementary, junior and senior high schools, who even though they are part time, work all hours of the day but are paid only for their teaching time. While some part time teachers have a rather limited amount of work outside of classes, our members at Doshisha Girls School were even told that the job would require 40 to 50 hours per week. When asked about this in collective bargaining, the school answered that some teachers are slower than others. This is unacceptable and the union believes that all work time must be paid as per the Labour Standards Law.

The union would like to solve all these issues through the collective bargaining process but after numerous attempts this was not possible. We hope Doshisha now comes to their senses and tries to solve these issues at the bargaining table and not by a judge’s gavel.

The news articles can be found here.