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Japan: Homless to Clean up Radioactive Waste

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Printed Date: Nov 18 2017 at 10:43am


Topic: Japan: Homless to Clean up Radioactive Waste
Posted By: tatee
Subject: Japan: Homless to Clean up Radioactive Waste
Date Posted: Dec 30 2013 at 5:21pm

http://thinkprogress.org/security/2013/12/30/3107771/yakuza-fukushima-homeless/" rel="nofollow - Japanese Mafia Rounds Up Homeless Men To Clean Up Radioactive Waste

By http://thinkprogress.org/person/hbrown/" rel="nofollow - Hayes Brown https://twitter.com/intent/user?screen_name=HayesBrown" rel="nofollow"> on December 30, 2013 at 3:25 pm

http://thinkprogress.org/security/2013/12/30/3107771/yakuza-fukushima-homeless/#" rel="nofollow -

"Japanese Mafia Rounds Up Homeless Men To Clean Up Radioactive Waste"



http://thinkprogress.org/security/2013/12/30/3107771/yakuza-fukushima-homeless/#" rel="nofollow - - -
Japanese homeless

CREDIT: Shutterstock

Far removed from the spotlight, layers deep in contracts paid for by Japanese taxpayer money, subcontractors hired to help clean up the largest radioactive disaster in Japanese history have taken to rounding up homeless men with the assistance of the Japanese mafia, and paying them less than minimum wage to carry out the potentially deadly labor.

Clean-up of Fukushima after the 2011 tsunami that http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-18718486" rel="nofollow - damaged a nuclear reactor and set off a debate over the safety of nuclear energy has been arduous at best, prone to delays and lacking in oversight. In a new report out on Monday, Reuters revealed that within the $35 billion web of government contracts some of the largest construction companies in Japan remain blissfully unaware of what their subcontractors are doing. This includes in Sendai, the largest city in the disaster zone, http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/12/30/us-fukushima-workers-idUSBRE9BT00520131230" rel="nofollow - hiring homeless men to aid in the clean-up, “removing topsoil, cutting grass and scrubbing down houses,” for less than minimum wage.

“In one case, a 55-year-old homeless man reported being paid the equivalent of $10 for a full month of work at Shuto,” Reuters writes. “The worker’s paystub, reviewed by Reuters, showed charges for food, accommodation and laundry were docked from his monthly pay equivalent to about $1,500, leaving him with $10 at the end of the August.”

Much of this shadowy recruitment is happening with the assistance of the Yakuza — the Japanese criminal syndicate — which has drawn the attention of Japanese police:

In January, October and November, Japanese gangsters were arrested on charges of infiltrating construction giant Obayashi Corp’s network of decontamination subcontractors and illegally sending workers to the government-funded project.

In the October case, homeless men were rounded up at Sendai’s train station by Sasa, then put to work clearing radioactive soil and debris in Fukushima City for less than minimum wage, according to police and accounts of those involved. The men reported up through a chain of three other companies to Obayashi, Japan’s second-largest construction company.

According to Reuters, at least “56 subcontractors listed on environment ministry contracts worth a total of $2.5 billion in the most radiated areas of Fukushima … would have been barred from traditional public works because they had not been vetted by the construction ministry.” At least five of those firms were unable to be located outside of their subcontracting paperwork.

Even with the assistance of the homeless population, cleanup is still taking far longer than originally predicted. “The Ministry of Environment announced on Thursday that work on the most contaminated sites would take two to three years longer than the original March 2014 deadline,” Reuters writes. “That means many of the more than 60,000 who lived in the area before the disaster will remain unable to return home until six years after the disaster.”

One homeless man Reuters spoke to said it was easier to live on the street than work on clean-up efforts, due to the exorbitant amount that the company he worked for charged him for food and lodging. “We’re an easy target for recruiters,” Shizuya Nishiyama told Reuters’ reporters. “We turn up here with all our bags, wheeling them around and we’re easy to spot. They say to us, are you looking for work? Are you hungry? And if we haven’t eaten, they offer to find us a job.” This sort of exploitation is a far cry from the stories from the Fukushima region in the days after the earthquake and tsunami, where pensioners http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/asiapcf/05/31/japan.nuclear.suicide/" rel="nofollow - willingly volunteered to take part in the clean-up effort as an attempt to protect younger workers from the effects of radiation.

The plight of the homeless — and the potential to be exploited — is far from a uniquely Japanese problem. In 2012, a U.S. ad agency drew headlines and scorn for its transformation of homeless Austinites into http://thesocietypages.org/cyborgology/2012/03/13/homeless-hotspots-exploitation-masquerading-as-charity-at-sxsw/" rel="nofollow - mobile Wi-Fi hotspots . In cities across America, while cutting off programs that would actually help the homeless rather than scam them out of earned wages, or encouraging those who are http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/10/16/2783331/leo-homeless-criminalization/" rel="nofollow - making attempts to get off the streets, the very act of being homeless is http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/09/19/2629581/criminalizing-homelessness/" rel="nofollow - being criminalized .

http://thinkprogress.org/security/2013/12/30/3107771/yakuza-fukushima-homeless/





Replies:
Posted By: foxyroy19
Date Posted: Dec 30 2013 at 5:45pm
OMG.


Posted By: yurika975
Date Posted: Dec 30 2013 at 6:02pm
I am not surprised that the gangsters are involved. Many are crooked in politics. Smh at the danger though


Posted By: newdiva1
Date Posted: Dec 30 2013 at 8:20pm
Damn.


Posted By: GoodGirlGoneGr8
Date Posted: Dec 30 2013 at 8:47pm
This is disgusting...


Posted By: TokyoRose
Date Posted: Dec 30 2013 at 9:21pm
Not surprised about this in the least.


Posted By: femmemichelle
Date Posted: Dec 30 2013 at 11:09pm
Boycott Japan.


Posted By: DiorShowGirl
Date Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 1:38am
china...killing little girls, abandoning them, or 2 child limit per household or whatever..


north korea---executing family members cause of?????????? and ur ex-girlfriend cause she was allegedly doing PICS

japan----hiring homeless men to clean up radioactive materials




Posted By: Sang Froid
Date Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 2:30am
Originally posted by femmemichelle femmemichelle wrote:

Boycott Japan.

lol.


Posted By: TokyoRose
Date Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 2:33am
Originally posted by femmemichelle femmemichelle wrote:

Boycott Japan.


Yeah, good luck with that. Our economies are interlinked. Boycotting Japan means that America's economy will collapse.


Posted By: Naturalchick30
Date Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 3:19am
Originally posted by foxyroy19 foxyroy19 wrote:

OMG.


Posted By: Derri
Date Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 7:23am
This is absolutely disgusting, but the rabbit hole is much deeper.


Posted By: yaya24
Date Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 8:29am
Horrible.
 
It would be more suitable to have people on death row in Japan to do this instead.


Posted By: TokyoRose
Date Posted: Jan 01 2014 at 3:31am
Originally posted by yaya24 yaya24 wrote:


Horrible.
 
It would be more suitable to have people on death row in Japan to do this instead.


That would be an interesting way to deal with the problem, except you have to understand the death penalty and capital punishment system is far different in the US than it is almost anywhere else in the world. People simply aren't encarcerated at the same rate, so getting enough people from the prison population would be problematic.

Last I checked, there were less than 200 people in all of Japan who received death sentences. That's nowhere near enough people to clean up the mess in Fukushima.


Posted By: chatnoir
Date Posted: Jan 01 2014 at 6:23pm
Shameful.



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