During pregnancy, women are protected by labor law and are entitled to some benefits. Pregnancy is not a reason for dismissing an employee (article 9 of the Law on Equal Employment Opportunities between Men and Women). Therefore, the employer cannot:
- Fire the person.
- Do not renew the contract of those who are hired for a fixed period.
- Lower the frequency limit for contract renewals indicated in advance.
- Change the form of hiring from permanent to temporary.
- You cannot change the content of the employment contract by making a permanent employee become a non-permanent employee.
- Force the worker to resign.
- Leave the employee in a disadvantageous position, ordering him to stay at home waiting for the call to work.
- Demeaning professional activity.
- Reducing the salary or calculating the bonus, etc., in a way that is disadvantageous to the employee.
- Make disadvantageous changes to the employee’s placement.
- Order the employee to stay at home.
Rights during Pregnancy:
- Do not work at night.
- Do not work on days off.
- Do not work overtime until the child is three years old.
- Do not perform dangerous activities.
- Do not handle heavy loads.
- Transfer the worker to a light duty, if requested by her.
- To be absent from work once every four weeks until the 23rd week of pregnancy.
- To be absent from work once every two weeks from the 24th week until the 35th week of pregnancy.
- To be absent from work once a week from the 36th week until taking maternity leave (98 days separated as follows: 42 days before giving birth and 56 days after).
If you have any doubts or problems regarding compliance with this law, the pregnant woman should contact one of the Labor Standards Inspection Offices (Roodoo Kijun Kantokusho). There are several units in each province, but it is important to master the Japanese language or be accompanied by someone who can help you with the translation, as the organization does not have interpreters.
Some of the benefits that pregnant women can receive:
- Childbirth Assistance (出産育児一時金＝shussan ichijikin).
- Maternity Benefit (出産手当金 – shusan teate kin).
- Maternity/Paternity Leave to care for a child under one year old (育児休業― ikuji kyugyou) through Unemployment Insurance, in accordance with the law from April 1, 2014.
- Maternity Leave (産前産後休業＝sanzensango kyugyou) by Shakai Hoken, in accordance with the law from April 1, 2014.
- Paternity Leave to take care of a child under one year old (育児休業― ikuji kyugyou) through Unemployment Insurance – (IKUMEN – explanatory booklet).
- Free Nurse Services for First Child, at the birth of the first child, a nurse visits the parents for guidance. To have this right, the mother must send the birth notice form (shussei renraku hyoo) to the public health center (hokenjo); Newborns can receive free health consultations in hospitals three times until they reach 13 months.
Activities prohibited for pregnant women:
- Work in a location at risk of landslides.
- Cleaning, inspection and repair of machinery engines.
- Manufacture of metal parts using steam presses or compressed air.
- Operation of machinery for loading civil construction materials and ship cargo.
- I work in extremely hot and cold places.
- Activity in a hole more than five meters deep.
- Work in a place over five meters high and at risk of falling.
- Any activity that involves chemical and toxic substances, such as mercury, lead, chromium and arsenic.
- Working environment with abnormal air pressure.