The Japan Federation of Service and Distributive Workers Unions (JSD), a federation of unions in the distribution and service industries in Japan, held an extraordinary convention on September 20 and decided on a policy of resuming consultations toward integration with UI Zensen (Japanese Federation of Textile, Chemical, Food, Commercial, Service and General Workers' Unions).
At the extraordinary convention, the JSD leadership explained its policy draft and emphasized its desire to resume consultations. The policy draft included such issues as (1) integration should take the form of establishing a new industrial federation; (2) discussions should be held on the approach to unified struggle; (3) new thinking on political activities; (4) consideration of measures for nonregular employees, since the ratio of fixed-term union members exceeds 40% in both organizations; (5) consideration of policies to take full advantage of the merits of integration; (6) the problem of membership dues; and (7) naming of the new organization.
Although there were no opposing views expressed in the meeting, participants did raise the problems of membership dues and participation in election activities and questioned whether the new organization would offer an equal standing. In voting, however, the leadership's policy draft was approved.
Following this decision, the JSD and UI Zensen will set up a committee to promote integration and resume consultations.
On September 29 the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare announced the results of its fact-finding survey of fiscal 2011 summer bonuses.
The survey targeted 380 companies (with capital of at least 1 billion yen, more than 1,000 workers, and a labour union) for which it was possible to gauge bonus payments.
The average bonus payment was 747,187 yen, up 4.96% over the previous year. This was the second consecutive year of increase, and the rate of increase was the highest since the 5.5% recorded in 1991.
By industry, the rate of increase was high for steel (15.99%), textiles (11.76%), nonferrous metals (10.68%), and machinery (10.61%). By contrast, the increase rate was low for paper and pulp (5.34%) and transportation (3.99%).
The settlement figures were high for chemicals (869,527 yen), precious equipment (850,895 yen), and electricity and gas (846,352 yen). By contrast, the bonuses in wholesale and retail (516,558 yen) and services (520,920 yen) were low compared with other industries.