I am more free to talk about this than I was earlier this month, and so I want to circle back to the interesting thing going on at GABA Japan.
The General Union in Osaka has been making an effort for the past couple years of clarifying the status of people working for GABA. GABA’s innovation has been to say that people who work for the company are not employees, but rather a kind of independent contractor, referred to as “gyoumu itaku”, through an “entrusted service contract”.
Now, there is actually a thing called “gyoumu itaku”, and probably the issue is whether the people at GABA really are gyoumu, or if it’s instead some kind of pretend thing to get around Japanese labor law. I don’t have the answer for you, but earlier administrative proceedings in Japan seem to suggest that the people really are employees. If the workers really are employees, then GABA has essentially been cheating all these years–whether or not the people associated with GABA minded or not. (You can’t just make up your own laws, and then, if nobody in your group “minds”, say that everything is OK. No, then everything is illegal.)
The union is holding an information meeting in Shimbashi, Tokyo, this Sunday, as this screenshot and link here says:
The agenda items are listed, which go to the basic things you get when you are an employee. I have highlighted the four that I think are important:
You see, at the end of the day, so to speak, if the GABA workers really are employees, the Japanese government should crack down on the situation. I know there are ownership changes afoot, courtesy of a post by Shawn of Let’s Japan. If the workers really are “itaku”, then, fine. If they are not, there is a serious problem.