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Japan to stop work gender discrimination

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TOKYO, Dec 27, 2005 (UPI via COMTEX) -- A government panel in Japan has come up with recommendations to fight gender discrimination in the workplace.

The recommendations prepared for the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry include suggestions on maternity leave, ban indirect discrimination and reinforce measures against sexual harassment, reports the Kyodo news agency.

The ministry will present the recommendations to parliament next year in an effort revise a 1997 law guaranteeing equal employment opportunities and treatment for men and women.

The panel said employers should be prohibited from using discrimination tactics like altering workers' status from regular to part-time, changing their job type, demoting them, encouraging them to retire or refusing to renew their employment contracts.

Employment termination during pregnancy or within a year after giving birth will not be allowed unless employers can prove that the decision was not because of pregnancy or childbirth, the panel's report said.

The panel said sexual harassment against men also should be included in the measures and that a system be set up to impose fines on violators.


Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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