Thursday, August 25, 2016

Very happy!; Shanti workers secure employmen

   "We are so happy! We'll work hard." Beaming workers of Shanti curry restaurants from India and Bangladesh expressed their joy in limited Japanese as they signed a new employment contract on August 12. They scored the first victory after struggling two months since June 20 when the company running the restaurants went bankruptcy, leaving the employees dismissed without any payments. Having no place to stay either, they stayed at the restaurants all the while. The owner of the new company named Shanti Japan Co., Ltd. has employed all the previous workers who wanted to work for it with a monthly salary of 200,000 yen each and accommodation at a dormitory. Ten out of 15 workers who used to work at the restaurants signed the contract. One more may join them.The other four decided not to work for the new company.
   The owner of Shanti Japan, a businessman in his 40s, learned about the problem of the former Shanti and the quagmire of the employees by news reports and thought of helping out. Though it was not easy for him and the workers to realize the new employment, they finally succeeded with the help of the adviser of the Shanti Union, lawyer IBUSUKI Shoichi, who worked patiently on difficult negotiations with other concerned parties. "I'm overwhelmed," said Ibusuki with a relieved look.By M
* "I'm very happy,"says a worker from India.



100 best labor films tell the basics of the movement〜“Live More Like a Human – Kokuro’s 15-Year Struggle” screening

As one of the selected labor films, “Be More Like a Human – Kokuro’s 15-year Struggle” (Kokuro means National Railway Workers’ Union) and “A Normal Life, Please” were screened at Café Lavanderia in Tokyo on Aug. 7. The small but cozy café, a temporary theater for screening, became a spectacular place with its adequate sound system. Some 15 people viewed the films. It was a good opportunity for me to watch closely my own production after a long interval. “Be More Like a Human – Kokuro’s 15-year Struggle” (2001) is a documentary describing privatization and segmentation of the Japan National Railways as well as the dismissal of 1,047 workers by JR from 1986 to 2001. After the film screenings, a mini talk by the producers (SASAKI Yumi and MATSUBARA Akira) was held, which was followed by a discussion. One young participant seemed shocked to see the film for the first time, and said “I was not born at the time. I was lucky to have had a chance to see this film.” The following comments were given also by senior participants: “I knew nothing. It was quite impressive”, “I wonder how you could make such a film at that time”.     


撮れましたね」などの感想が寄せられた。(松原明) 続き・「労
働映画百選」サイト *写真=上映後トークする佐々木有美さん

Foreign environmental activists join Friday anti-nuclear action

 On Aug. 5, the Friday anti-nuclear action was held in front of the office of the Prime Minister as usual, but what was unusual was that there were a lot of foreigners among the protesters, holding signs and calling, “We are against Nuclear Power!” They were members of FoE from India, South Korea, Indonesia and so on. FoE or Friends of the Earth is an international NGO that seeks to address environmental issues on a global basis. The speeches began at 7 p.m., and the first speaker KAMEYA Sachiko from Futaba in Fukushima criticized the Supreme Court decision ordering the removal of the tents erected by anti-nuclear groups next to METI building. “We wouldn’t have needed the tents. I wouldn’t have had to come here, if the Fukushima nuclear power accidents had not happened! The government should deal with the aftermath of the accidents, rather than bothering with the tents. The radioactive water is still being discharged into the environment.” The representative of the FoE said, “I was shocked that the Japanese government has done nothing about the accident.” After that, all the participants called in chorus, “Stop the nuclear power plants at once!” (By KINOSHITA Masaaki)


85日金曜日、官邸前の反原発抗議行動の日。いつも みかけるメ
ンバーのプラカードの列に、大勢の外国人が並んで 「原発反対」
のコールをしているのに驚いた。かれらはインドや 韓国、インド
ネシアなどから来日した「FoE」のメンバーだった。 FoEとはフレ
ンドオブザアースで、地球規模の環境問題に取り組ん でいるNGO
ある。午後7時のスピーチタイムになると、真っ先に 双葉町の亀屋
幸子さんが、最高裁のテント撤去の決定をうけて、 「テントなん
かなくたってよかったんです。福島の原発事故さえ 起こらなかっ
たら、わたしはこんなとこに来なくてよかったんで すよ。テント
より事故の収束を早くやって下さい。いまも汚染水 はたれ流しで
す」と訴えていた。FoEの代表は「日本の政府が何も していないこ
とにショックを受けた」と訴え、「原発はいますぐ ストップし
ろ」と全員でコールした。(木下昌明) 報告・動画(7分)