Cabaret worker's union hold first protest

Just translated this story for Japan Today:

March 27 – Tokyo’s “Kyabakura Union”–a labor union formed by and for cabaret girls–held their first protest Friday night in Shinjuku’s infamous Kabukicho district.

Around 150 members marched through the streets followed by a truck with giant speakers that pumped out music into the neighborhood, shouting things such as “Pay us right!” Some participated in the 80-minute protest wearing full cabaret dress.

Both men and women in the industry are demanding better working conditions, and the group was also working to make known a new consultation service for those who are having problems. In the cabaret business many have problems with not getting paid, violence, sexual harassment and fine systems, and union representative Rin Sakurai explained they hoped the efforts will help improve the poor standards that have become normal in the industry.

Some are apathetic, however. One male cabaret employee complained, “Those who get fined for being late, it’s their own fault.” Higher ups in the union were seen walking and smoking during the protest and verbally abusing traffic cops in the area.

Sankei News has some (small) photos of the demo here. Read more about the union itself here.

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