The General Union
Teaching English in Japan: What is the General Union?
by Kevin Burns
I used to hate the General Union. Some of the members were so negative about ALL English schools in Japan. They tarred all schools with the same brush, and I knew that there were many good schools in Japan, but the happy teachers were not posting much about them. Anger is a great motivator, and angry teachers were posting their negative experiences about their terrible English school.
The General Union seems to have calmed down and matured from the rabble it was
20 years ago. They are now doing a lot of good for teachers in a measured and mature way. They regularly fight unfair labour practices.
The General Union is a legally registered labour/trade union, part of the Japanese labour union movement, and we are open to workers of any category or nationality.
Since it was founded in 1991, our union has established a solid reputation for protecting its members’ rights and improving their working conditions. We are workers like you who have joined together to protect our livelihoods and rights as workers. As a union, we are able to provide our members advice on workplace issues, and we actively help our members to organize and negotiate in their workplaces.
The general union does its best to protect the rights of English teachers in Japan. Recently they have gone to bat for many of the ALTs (Assistant Language Teachers) who have faced terrible working conditions in many cases. They also did their best to help the Nova teachers when the original school went bankrupt. Learn more about the General Union.