Hiding Sexual Harassment by clients at Gaba

If you have been following our news you know that the union has dealt with sexual harassment of instructors by Gaba students.  Some cases have been quite extreme. Things improved to some degree when, frustrated by the lack of action by Gaba management, members went to The Japan Times.

The paper ran with the issue, publishing two articles on sexual harassment in eikaiwa in June and September last year. This forced Gaba to allow instructors to block inappropriate students from their schedules much more easily. At negotiations, a number of problematic students were discussed. One particular student was discussed in detail.

Fearful of being sued, the company said that they were unable to terminate the contract with the student. They stated that they were monitoring him but the details cannot be discussed here.

As in most language schools, there are student records where instructors record "special circumstances". The warnings were on the records for a number of months.

They were later deleted. A new member took issue with management's action. New instructors were left with no warning at all, and no knowledge that they are in their rights to have the student blocked.

The instructor brought up this issue with the company several times, with no action taken. Finally, she entered comments herself advising that the client had harassed instructors. The company's response was to repeatedly delete the comments, and then give a written warning to the instructor. This is unacceptable.

Finally, the company updated the client's file. The records have now been whitewashed with the comment that instructors should speak to management, but no further details are given. This is not adequate.

The union has thrown our support to have the warning removed from the teachers record, and to have a detailed warning placed on the student's record.

Instructors shouldn't have to put up with this situation, and the company removing warnings and then punishing an instructor for adding one is unacceptable.

If you are aware of any similar cases, please feel free to contact the union.

Tuesday May 26, 2015

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