Central Deliberation Rally for 2005 Spring Struggle
Maintain Wage Curves in All Unions
22 November 2004
From November 1st to the 2nd, RENGO held its Central Deliberation Rally for 2005 Spring Struggle at the Hotel Langwood in Tokyo. 550 participants from across the nation attended the Rally in order to deliberate on its basic concepts for the 2005 Spring Struggle. The results of the deliberations held at the Rally will be proposed to the 44th Central Committee on November 25th as "Spring Struggle Policy."
Photo: President Sasamori speaks at the Rally in order to maintain wage curves in every union. (November 1)
From the outset, rally participants observed a moment of silent prayer in honor of the dead and the survivor of the Niigata Chuetsu Earthquake. Afterwards, RENGO President Sasamori gave his opinions on discussions over the Spring Struggle Policy.
He described the present state of economic recovery has only now begun to show signs of bottoming out of the worst, but he indicated that this is not leading to overall economic recovery and emphasized that "I want all trade unions, by their collective will, to work on activities to maintain wage curves." Sasamori called on participants to demand and get across-the-board wage raises, if conditions permit, despite these being hard times.
He also spoke about wage raises for workers at small-and-medium-sized enterprises. Due to last year's activities, expanding wage disparities have been turned back in some degree, but because disparities between small-and-medium-sized enterprises and major enterprises still loom large in comparison to wage levels based on business size, RENGO will carry out further efforts to correct these disparities by focusing on small-and-medium-sized unions as well as local unions at the upcoming Spring Struggle. Sasamori also said that RENGO will support part-time workers in their negotiations over the issue of wage increases.
Director General Nakanomyo of the RENGO-RIALS (JTUC Research Institute for Advancement of Living Standards) reported on the "Current Conditions and Problems of the Japanese Economy" after which Professor Ishida of Doshisha University gave a lecture on the "Possibilities of Trade Unions."
Various opinions from the floor were raised that responded to the basic concepts proposed by RENGO General Secretary Kusano including the following: "whether or not RENGO should present a unified demand on across-the-board wage raises," "we should work on and find appropriate ways of conducting business relationships as social rules," and "the importance of information disclosure."
The following day, participants held a discussion and heard reports on case studies on three themes: "maintaining wage curves and correcting differentials," "improving the treatment of atypical workers, intra-firm minimum wage agreements, etc.," and "establishing work rules/activities to maintain laws, regulations and labor agreements."