World Economy

Protests Against Abe’s Labor Reforms

Protests Against Abe’s Labor ReformsProtests Against Abe’s Labor Reforms

Hundreds marched against the expansion of the “discretionary working system”, in which workers are paid for a predetermined set number of hours rather than the actual time worked, in front of JR Shinjuku Station in Tokyo on Feb. 25,Nikkei reported. Banners and placards were waved as protesters chanted, “Do not make us work overtime, every day, every night,” in the demonstration held by Aequitas, a grass-roots association that has been calling for an increase in the minimum wage. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s administration is planning to expand the existing system to have more people work under discretionary labor contracts that factor in a predetermined number of hours, but do not pay for additional hours worked beyond that. Abe has argued that the reforms would reduce overwork by enabling employees on discretionary contracts to work more flexible hours. Opposition camps are arguing against that change at the current Diet session on the basis that the data cited by Abe turned out to be inappropriate.

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