Company president arrested for not paying for overtime

The Okinawa Labor Bureau arrested a Naha office supply store in Naha, and the store manager, Tuesday, on violating the Labor Standards Law.

According to the Labor Bureau, 42-year-old Kensaku Aniya, the president of Naha office supply store “Yasukiya,” and its 36-year-old store manager on suspicion of making the staff of the store to work overtime without concluding a written agreement (so called “36 Agreement”) that covers overtime and holiday work, and failing to pay required extra charges for their overtime.

According to the Okinawa Labor Bureau Standard Inspection Section, Yasukiya failed to pay a total of ¥5 million for 11 people in its staff over a period of two years. This is the first time since 1990 that an employer is arrested for such violations in Okinawa.

The bureau made the arrests because of the number of victimized staff and the fact that the president had not responded for more than two warnings this year to correct the situation. The Standard Inspection Section has not said whether the two arrested have admitted the charges.

The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare has tightened enforcing the laws since 2015 in order to reduce long working hours, after a female staff member of Dentsu advertising agency killed herself due to mental stress from excessive overtime.