Why Japanese companies ban women from wearing glasses — Quartz

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But in Japan, the pattern is reversed, with half-time work among women rising over the past 15 years. But there are additional obstacles for Japanese women. Although 3.5 million of them have entered the workforce since Prime Minister Shinzo Abe took office in 2012, two-thirds are working solely half-time.

Craving Freedom, Japan’s Women Opt Out of Marriage

The shift is tied to the changing Japanese work drive. Close to 70 p.c of ladies ages 15 to sixty four now have jobs — a document. But their careers are often held back by a relentless tide of home burdens, like filling out the meticulous daily logs required by their youngsters’s day-care centers, making ready the intricate meals usually expected of Japanese women, supervising and signing off on homework from college and afterschool tutoring sessions, or hanging rounds of laundry — because few households have electrical dryers. But for increasingly Japanese women — who’ve traditionally been circumscribed by their relationships with men, youngsters and different relations — singlehood represents a type of liberation.

‘There are virtually no women in power': Tokyo’s female employees demand change

From necessary excessive heels to a ban on glasses, Japanese women have been busy pushing again in opposition to restrictive and anachronistic gown codes in the workplace in 2019. Earlier this 12 months, Japanese women began voicing their discontent with arcane office restrictions on their seems via the #KuToo movement, which drew attention to the requirement that many corporations nonetheless have that women put on excessive heels to work. The term #KuToo is a triple pun, enjoying on the Japanese words kutsu (shoes), kutsuu (pain), and the #MeToo motion. The explosion of curiosity in discriminatory remedy towards women on the workplace additionally comes amid a growing rejection of sexist norms in Japanese society because the #MeToo movement began gaining ground since 2018. According to the BBC, a number of Japanese retailers said companies have “banned” women from sporting eyeglasses and that they offer a “chilly impression” to feminine store assistants.

The chorus of discontent in opposition to the glasses ban echoes an analogous phenomenon in South Korea final yr, when a female news anchor broke ranks and determined to wear glasses as an alternative of putting on contact lenses for her early morning present. The sight of a girl sporting glasses reading the news not solely shocked viewers, but also prompted a local airline to evaluation its own insurance policies and permit feminine cabin crew to wear glasses. The program listed a variety of reasons that employers gave for not wanting women to wear glasses whereas at work. Domestic airways stated it was for security reasons, companies in the beauty business stated it was difficult to see the employee’s make-up correctly behind glasses, while major retail chains stated female shop assistants give off a “chilly impression” in the event that they put on glasses.

Earlier this 12 months there was a name for Japanese firms to stop forcing female employees to wear high heels. More than 21,000 folks signed an online petition began by a female actor in what has turn into generally known as the #KuToo motion. Yanfei Zhou, a researcher at the Japan Institute for Labor Policy & Training and writer of a guide on the subject, “Japan’s Married Stay-at-Home Mothers in Poverty,” contends there’s a gap of 200 million yen ($1.82 million) in lifetime earnings between women who work full-time and women who change from full-time to part-time on the age of 40. More than 40% of half-time working women earn 1 million yen ($9,100) or much less a 12 months, based on Japan’s Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry.

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Traditional Japanese eating places stated that glasses merely don’t go properly with conventional Japanese costume. The hashtag “glasses are forbidden” (#メガネ禁止) has been trending on social media in Japan this week following the airing of a program on the Nippon TV community exploring how firms in different sectors do not permit feminine workers to wear glasses on the job. The program followed a report revealed late final month by Business Insider Japan (hyperlink in Japanese) on the same issue.

Japanese women on social media are demanding the right to wear glasses to work, after reports that employers have been imposing bans. One Twitter person posted a screenshot of a news broadcast on the glasses ban, and wrote, “It will result in accidents,” according to a translation. Japan’s consumption-oriented culture also signifies that single women with careers and money have a variety of activities and emotional retailers japanese girl that their mothers or grandmothers did not, Ms. Nemoto added. And, notably, Japanese women not need husbands to ensure their financial security. Fed up with the double normal, Japanese women are more and more opting out of marriage altogether, focusing on their work and newfound freedoms, but in addition alarming politicians preoccupied with trying to reverse Japan’s declining inhabitants.

With entitlement prices skyrocketing, the federal government has responded by scaling again benefits whereas proposing to raise the retirement age. Some Japanese responded by shifting money out of low-interest financial institution accounts and into 401(ok)-type retirement plans, hoping funding positive aspects would possibly soften the blow. But such a strategy requires financial savings, and ladies in Japan are much less more likely to have any.

Japanese women

japanese women

Today, such outright insults have faded as a growing variety of Japanese women are postponing or forgoing marriage, rejecting the traditional path that leads to what many now regard as a life of domestic drudgery. Not so long ago, Japanese women who remained single after the age of 25 were known as “Christmas cake,” a slur evaluating them to outdated holiday pastries that can’t be offered after Dec. 25. © 2020 Guardian News & Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved.

The lack of benefits, job safety and opportunity for development—hallmarks of full-time employment in Japan—make such women financially vulnerable, particularly in the event that they don’t have a companion to share expenses with. Japanese men typically see their compensation rise until they attain 60. For women, common compensation stays largely the same from their late twenties to their sixties, a truth attributable to pauses in employment tied to having kids or half-time, rather than full-time, work. Since the mid-2000s, part-time employment rates have fallen for girls in more than half the nations that make up the OECD.

“Comfort women” is a euphemism for the girls and women – a lot of them Korean – forced into prostitution at Japanese navy brothels. The issue has plagued Japan’s ties with South Korea for many years. The Imperial Japanese Army asked the government to offer one “consolation woman” for each 70 troopers, Japan’s Kyodo news company mentioned, citing wartime authorities documents it had reviewed, shedding fresh mild on Tokyo’s involvement in the follow. The hashtag #メガネ禁止 (#GlassesBan) was trending on Twitter by Wednesday, with men and women saying they disagreed with the policy.

Japanese Women Face a Future of Poverty

“If the foundations prohibit solely women to put on glasses, this is a discrimination against women,” Kanae Doi, the Japan director at Human Rights Watch, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation on Friday. In the latest protest towards inflexible guidelines over women’s look, the hashtag “glasses are forbidden” was trending on Twitter in response to a Japanese tv show that uncovered businesses that were imposing the bans on female workers.

But even with these benefits, Japanese women—whether single or married, full-time or half-time—face a tough monetary future. A confluence of things that include an getting older inhabitants, falling delivery charges and anachronistic gender dynamics are conspiring to break their prospects for a cushty retirement. According to Seiichi Inagaki, a professor at the International University of Health and Welfare, the poverty rate for older Japanese women will more than double over the following forty years, to 25%.