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Press translations [Japan]. Economic Series 0213, 1946-01-27.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: economic-0965

call-number: DS801 .S81

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No. 965 Date: 27 Jan 46


ITEM 1 Re-establishment of the Tokyo Transportation Labor Union - Magazine: Ro- Mu Jiho - 24 Nov 45. Translator: Kawata
An Outline of the Reconstruction of TOKYO Transportation Labor Union
The TOKYO Transportation Labor Union (KOTSU ROD KUMIAI), which was one of the left-wing associations with a good record in JAPAN'S history, was forced during the CHINA incident to submit to the militaristic powers. For eight years the progress of this union was almost nil. But on 20 November 1945, 7,500 of the employees of the TOKYO railways united and reorganized the association. This stimulated railway employees of the TOKYO Suburban Electric Railway to unite, and also the railway employees of six of the Nation's largest cities to do the same. The public is watching with great interest the development of this large six-city organization and also the TOKYO Transportation Labor Union.
In the organization of the New TOKYO Transportation Labor Union there are two ideoligies which must not be overlooked, A group from the old association, which fought for independence, and against the bureaucrats and who tried to disorganize the organization during the war, is trying to organize a completely new organization. There is another group which is attempting to reorganize, for a second time, an association similar to the one existing before the war.
The revival of this movement was started because of the antagonestic feeling, held by the leaders of the TOKYO Transportation Labor Union, for being suppressed by the Government during the war. This movement was unexpectedly carried out by the MEGURO district railway laborers, who held a meeting, but excluded all bureaucratic employees. They decided that the People of JAPAN had been forced by militarists to continue the war and to work on the basis of gratitude and service toward one's country.
After the war, there were indications of the establishment of labor unions by the bureaucrats, so these workers excluded the bureaucrats and their sympathizers and organized a labor union composed only of the real laborers. In JAPAN, only under a democratic form of Government can labor unions be established. The principal platform of the unions includes:
Agitation for the enactment of a labor union law.
Provision of homes and clothing for war victims.
Plans to combat the food and coal shortages.
Inclusion of bonus pay into wages.
Raising of salaries according to the level of prices.
The establishment of one great labor union for railway workers.

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ECONOMIC SERIES: 213 (Continued)

ITEM 1 (Continued)
Immediate abolition of compulsory labor for gratitude and service to one's country.

Two Schools of Thought on the Inauguration of the Association
One plan is advocated by the TOKYO Transportation Labor Union whereby the center of activity for the union would be controlled exclusively by the laborers. If the opinions of the former union leaders agree with those of the new labor union, then these leaders will be accepted into the labor union. The committee chairman for this plan is MACHIDA, Jinsaburo, who is also a representative of the TOKYO Transportation Labor Union.
The other plan is supported by the leaders of the former union, whose committee chairman is KAWANO, HEIJI. These former leaders insist upon the re-establishment of the old TOKYO City Traffic Union, with the old leaders reinstated into their respective offices.
Following are the developments in various destricts TOKYO as to which plan is favored.
HIROO Carshed - The plan for organizing a union from the ranks of the laborers themselves is developing very smoothly.
SHINJOKU Carshed - Although before the war SHINJUKU had been active under good leader, at present there is little activity but some are striving to aid in the realization of the first plan.
WASEDA Carshed - The bureaucrats were too powerful for labor here to organize, but now, with the aid of the active carsheds, they have begun to organize.
OTSUKA Carshed - The laborers agree with the plan of the TOKYO Transportation Labor Union, but they have no leader and are not activating with the assistance of other groups.
SUGAMO Carshed - All workers agree with the first plan.
KOMAGCMI - Labor and the leaders of the former union will never reach an agreement here. The workers favor support of the former plan.
MITSUVRA - The workers support the laborers' plan.
YAKAGI JIMA - The power is held by the bureaucrats, who are too strong, and labor cannot organize.
MITA Carshed - Labor has organized well, and has decided to fight all elements opposed to the first plan.
SHIBUYA Bus Garage - Laborers held as meeting and voted to support the first plan.
SHINYA BUS Garage - Both the bureaucrats and the Labor Party are strivin to get the upper hand in control of the garage.
OTAKIBASHI Carshed - The laborers support the second plan.
SENJU Carshed - The bureaucratic power is too strong and the car shed supports the second plan.
Counterplan of the Present Tokyo Transportation Labor Union
On 20 November 1945 a meeting to form a labor union was held at the KANDA HITCTSUPASHI Hall. There were 500 representatives, plus others who filled the auditorium to capacity. Supporters of both plans were present, and although they did not discuss types of union to be formed they agreed on the following three points.
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ECONOMIC SERIES: 213 (Continued)
ITEM 1 (Continued)
Immediate reinstatement of employees who were dismissed according to the Public Peace Regulation Law (JIAN IJI HO).
Increase in wages.
Absolute support of the YOMIURI Newspaper strike.
A Draft of the Course of Action
During the eight years of the CHINA Incident and the fifteen years of the MANCHURIA Incident, JAPAN followed a purely aggressive policy; a despotic Government controlled all economics and politics. Unions were disbanded under government orders, After JAPAN's defeat, she must according to the POTSDAM Declaration, become a democratic Nation, and she can do this only by permitting the existence of labor unions. The labor unions requested the dismissal from the Diet of all members who were responsible for the war, and also the abolition of political parties who still advocate the old form of Government.
The labor unions throughout JAPAN should unite, and all rural and city employees should form one union under the name of the General Labor Union Then this union of JAJAN should join in the International Labor Association.
The following are the aims of the new labor association for the laborers:
Enactment of a labor association law and unemployment insurance law.
Amendment of the law of health insurance and the law of the welfare pension.
Abolition of laws which hinder the activity of the labor associations
Abolition of the wage regulation law.
Conclusion of a single union agreement.
Participation in the operation of enterprises.
Reduction of working hours.
Adding of war bonuses to salaries.
Raising of wages.
Reformation of the pay system now existing.
Settlement of the food problem guarantee of homes to members of the association who were victims of the war.
Distribution of clothing.
The establishment and management of a fraternal society and an insurance association.
Investigation among union members of these who may have been responsible for the war.
The acceleration of the progress of the transportation industries end the formation of a single labor association.
Participation of this union in the Japanese Federation of Labor to increase its strength.

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ECONOMIC SERIES: 213 (Continued)
ITEM 2 Topical Questions and Replies on Labor Unions - Magazine: Hiicari (Monthly) [illegible]Jan 46. Translator: T. Kosaka
Q: What of the progress of labor union laws in JAPAN?
A: In 1918, a labor union bill appeared for the first time in JAPAN, but was not submitted to the Diet. Since then it has been submitted to the Diet three times (in 1924, 1927 and 1931), but it was never passed.
In 1927, it passed the House of Representatives but was rejected by the House of Peers. Afterwards, it was sent into the Diet several times by political parties but was rejected every time and at last it disappeared after the 73rd Diet in 1938.
Speaking of numbers of unions in the country, there were 40 unions established by 1929 and 993 unions by 1935. The year 1935 was the peak year however, and since then they have decreased to 49 by 1940, and to three by the end of June, 1944. Finally, they disappeared from the country completely. But the post war position of labor unions is becoming more and more important, as they are being formed at a tremendous rate of speed net in all parts of JAPAN, without waiting for the passage of a labor union law.
Q: What are the key points of the new Labor Union Law?
A; (1) Recongnition of the right to unionize and the right to strike; (2) Abolition of all laws and police regulations which have heretofore been suppressing labor movements; (3) The formation of arbitration boards consisting of laborers, capitalists and third persons as mediator to arbitrate all disputes between labor and capital, the decision of which is to be considered final.
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Economic Series 0213, 1946-01-27.
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