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  • Kyodo: Gifu firms employing Brazilian children

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on January 1st, 2007

    Courtesy of Matt at The Community. Here we have the ultimate exploitation of foreigners–their children, as child laborers.

    According to the article, this was caused (if not indirectly justified) by parental guidance and lack of interest in school?

    How about the responsibility of the lawbreaking employers and headhunters? Not to mention the low wages offered foreign labor that are not conducive to raising a family in the first place. The businesses get off easy once again, it seems. Comments from Matt follow article. Arudou Debito in Sapporo


    Gifu firms warned on Brazilian child labor
    Kyodo News/The Japan Times
    Saturday, Dec. 30, 2006

    Two temporary job-placement agencies in Gifu Prefecture hired 12
    children of Brazilian immigrants of Japanese origin to work in
    factories in violation of labor laws, officials of the labor
    ministry’s Gifu bureau said Friday.

    The discovery highlights a serious problem: An increasing number of
    immigrants in Japan are sending their kids to work, rather than
    school, due to language problems and economic hardship.

    The local labor standards inspection office has already told the two
    firms to stop hiring children and the 12 are no longer working,
    officials at the Gifu Prefecture Labor Bureau said.

    The two firms hired 12 boys and girls aged 13 to 15 beginning about
    February, with the lowest paid receiving 850 yen per hour. The
    placement companies sent them to factories operated by several Gifu
    companies, including manufacturers, the officials said.

    The Labor Standards Law bans the hiring of anyone under age 16.

    Acting on a tip, the Gifu labor standards inspection office visited
    the firms in November and determined that they had hired the
    children, officials said.

    They were supposed to be enrolled in junior high school but were not
    attending. They told the officials they wanted to supplement their
    families’ income rather than go to school because their classes,
    which are taught in Japanese, are difficult to understand and boring.

    The firms involved said they knew the ages of the children but hired
    them at the request of their parents, who were struggling to make a

    In 1990, Japan began accepting immigrant workers of Japanese descent,
    mostly Brazilians, whose numbers had swelled to around 350,000 by the
    end of 2005. Many work in factories in central Japan.

    Comments from Matt:

    1. The article states this is an increasing problem, but states no
    statistics. Wonder how they know this is an increasing problem?

    2. Interesting how the reporter places the brunt of the crime on the
    parents’ shoulders. “The firms involved said they knew the ages of
    the children but hired them at the request of their parents.” Come

    2 Responses to “Kyodo: Gifu firms employing Brazilian children”

    1. Global Voices Online » Blog Archive » Japan: immigrant child labour Says:

      […] Matt from comments on the local news concerning two temporary job placement agencies hiring 12 Brazilian children labour in Japan. Oiwan Lam […]

    2. C A Volker Says:

      Obviously, there are three parties at fault here–
      1) materialistic parents. In the end, parents do have the final responsibility for their children.

      2) greedy and racist companies, who would not dare to try this on Japanese children.

      3) lazy and racist school administrators and teachers, who fail to provide adequate education for Brazilian children here in Gifu.

      The only decent adults in this story are the Labour Standards Office workers who stopped this. Glad to know my tax money is going to good use there, if not in the public school system.

    Leave a Reply


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