Third strike at Osaka Gaigo leads to mediation application

How do you deal with an employer that is like a deer frozen in your headlights in the middle of a highway? Welcome to Osaka Gaigo Senmon Gakko.

 Japanese and foreign teachers from the General Union and Japanese teachers and staff from Naniwa Union have now been on strike three times in order to win back wage and bonus increases which have been going down over the past five years.

Union members are clear; they want a wage increase OR they want the employer to clearly show them the financial statements which proves a wage increase is not possible. Members have given the employer many opportunities to furnish these documents to the union. Actually, according to the Private Schools’ Law, these documents must be made available.

So why is Osaka Gaigo stalling? You must agree that members are right to start feeling that the company’s cry of financial problems is a giant lie when they won’t even supply the documents to prove it, wouldn’t you? Could it be that between their Osaka and Tokyo schools that they’re actually making money and therefore don’t want to show the financial documents? Could there be some financial discrepancy that the employer does not want anyone to know about?

The union has been clear; if the employer proves that they cannot give a pay increase the union will drop its demands. So what is Osaka Gaigo waiting for? Don’t they care about the disruption this is causing the students?

 

So what have members done to try to move this dispute along?

 

  • We’ve negotiated.
  • We’ve asked for financial documents to confirm employer’s statements.
  • Gone on strike twice before 5 December.
  • Finally, in order to get the employer out of the headlights, we’ve decided to ask for mediation from the Osaka Labour Commission. So in our last strike, members walked out together to make the application for mediation. The employer can either accept or decline. The employer declining will very much be a sign that their cries of poverty are a big lie.
  • During our last strike on 5 December we wanted to show the employer that members are still willing to strike, but also want to engage the employer in dialogue to resolve the wage demands. This is why we went on strike AND applied for mediation at the same time.

 

Let’s see what happens while members fight and mediate to win a pay increase while the employer remains frozen in the union’s headlight.

 


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