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A group of men, some in suits, carry signs in a protest.
Labor Unions
  1. Rapid Rise of Labor Unions in Japan from 1945
  2. Postwar Japan's first Labor Laws
  3. Labor Strikes and Production Control
  4. Bloody May Day (May 1, 1952)
  5. Formation of Sōhyō (Japan General Council of Trade Unions)
  6. The Rise and Fall of Radical Union Activity
  7. Enterprise Unions in Japan
  8. The Miike Mine Strike
  9. Strikes Japanese-Style
  10. Who Can Strike in Japan
  11. Kinds of Strikes in Japan
  12. The Spring Labor Offensive (Shuntō)
  13. Enterprise Union Cooperation
  14. Privatization of Japan National Railway
  15. Rengō and the Merger of Japanese Labor Federations
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Hase Takemaro cries from behind a microphone.
Secretary-General Hase Takemaro of the All-Japan Federation of Public Workers cries as he announces that the planned general strike has been banned.
Photo from Mainichi Shimbun.
Postwar Japan's first Labor Laws
Japan’s first post war labor law, the Trade Union Law of 1945, established a national Labor Relations Commission to oversee labor disputes and ensure that both management and unions followed the law. The Commission had representatives from labor, management, and the general public. It was modeled partly on a similar three-part Commission used by the International Labor Organization (ILO) and a one established in the United States to manage labor disputes during wartime. The second of Japan’s basic postwar labor union laws, the Labor Relations Adjustment Act of 1946, was modeled after the American Taft-Hartley Act, which provided ways for government to intervene in labor disputes that might paralyze essential public services. When electrical utility workers in Japan threatened a national strike in the fall of 1946, the new law allowed the government to require a 30 day “cooling off period” before the strike could begin. This provision is rarely used anymore.
Special Terms: public services  |  national strike  |  strike  |  Taft-Hartley Act

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