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  1. Group Employment Trips
  2. Spring Employment Season
  3. Hiring New Graduates
  4. Hiring New High School Graduates
  5. The Japanese Employment System
  6. Lifetime Employment
  7. The Seniority Wage System (nenkō joretsu)
  8. The Bonus System
  9. Enterprise Unions in Japan
  10. Enterprise Union Cooperation
  11. Unemployment Insurance
  12. Dual Tracks in Female Occupations: Ippan Shoku (Non-Career Track) and Sōgō Shoku (Career Track)
  13. Increase of Female Employees
  14. Female dominant occupations
  15. Post-Retirement Employment and Social Security
  16. Marriage Retirement and Retirement Ages for Men and Women
  17. Relations between Large and Small Companies
  18. Part-time Female Workers
  19. What Kinds of Work Do People Do in Japan?
  20. Freeter/ Furita: Part-Time Workers in Japan
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A bride sits, looking at her bouquet
The retirement of women due to marriage is called a“kotobuki (celebration) retirement.”
Photo Courtesy of Ryoko Yamamoto.
Marriage Retirement and Retirement Ages for Men and Women
While the number of female employees gradually increased after the war, there was severe gender discrimination in the workplace. Assuming that women should work only until they married, many companies required women to retire when they married. Using the constitutional provisions about gender equity, women began to file lawsuits against companies that forced them into retirement. In 1966, the Tokyo District Court ruled that a woman could not be dismissed simply because she had gotten married. In 1969, the court ruled against a company that had a gendered retirement age of 55 for men and 30 for women. Even after marriage retirement and forcing women to retire early became illegal, many women have continued to retire at a young age due to the difficulty of balancing childrearing and work. The labor force participation rate, which indicates what percentage of the population works at different ages, shows that job participation among Japanese women shifts in an M shape as they age. The labor force participation rate among Japanese women is high when they are in their 20s, becomes lower in their 30s when they enter the childrearing stage, and then increases in their 40s when children become independent. Click CHART to see the labor force participation rate among Japanese women by age.
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