National Union of General Workers

The National Union of General Workers (NUGW) is the shortened, English title of the National Union of General Workers National Council (全国一般労働組合全国協議会 Zenkoku Ippan Roudou Kumiai Zenkoku Kyogikai), a national labour union council established in 1991.[1] NUGW is affiliated to the National Trade Union Council (全国労働組合連絡協議会 Zenrokyo),[2] the smallest of the three national labour federations in Japan. As of September 2010 the NUGW had around 7000 members.[3]

Full nameNational Union of General Workers National Council (National Union of General Workers)
Founded1 December 1991
AffiliationNational Trade Union Council
Key peopleYujiro Hiraga (Chair), Keiji Watanabe (General Secretary)
Office locationShimbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
WebsiteNUGW (in English)
NUGW (in Japanese)

The NUGW acts as an umbrella organization encompassing roughly 40 autonomous general unions and trade unions,[4] including the National Union of General Workers Tokyo Nambu (often referred to as simply Nambu), a union which represents workers in southern Tokyo and Eastern Japan; the National Union of General Workers, Tokyo (also known as Tokyo Union), which represents parts of Tokyo and Saitama Prefecture, the General Union, headquartered in Osaka, representing Western Japan, the Fukuoka General Union, representing Kyūshū, and the University Teachers' Union.

The union works to raise awareness of problems faced by all workers in Japan, including foreign/migrant workers, to improve members' working conditions and bargaining power and to inform members of their rights under Japanese labour law.[5] Activities include strikes,[6] rallies and leafleting, filing injunctions and arguing cases at Labour Commissions and District Courts[7] on issues such as fixed-term contracts, the non-enrollment of employees into Social Insurance, illegal outsourcing of Assistant Language Teachers by public schools, and unfair dismissals due to one-year contracts.


  1. Overview, NUGW National Council (National Union of General Workers), 8 June 2011
  2. Affiliated unions, National Trade Union Council (Zenrokyo) 8 June 2011
  3. The Japan Institute for Labor Policy and Training homepage The Current Status and Significance of General Unions: Concerning the Resolution of Individual Labor Disputes p68 Retrieved January 26 2012
  4. Affiliated unions, NUGW National Council (National Union of General Workers), 7 June 2011
  5. "Faces & Places - Q&A - Louis Carlet". Metropolis. February 17, 2006. Archived from the original on 2006-11-20. Retrieved 2007-02-19.
  6. "PALE Journal of Professional Issues". December 1998. Retrieved 2007-02-19.
  7. "The Language Teacher by Roger Jones". November 2001. Retrieved 2007-02-19.

See also

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