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Monday, January 26, 2009

The Boss is sending me home to....huh?

What do Japanese employers know that we should know? That the birthrate is slipping to a non-replaceable new-time low and something must be done or else we face...extinction. Thanks to all of the advances made in contraception, women's liberation, abortion and the me, myself and I way of doing things, we now are witness to new employment concepts that allow for time to go home and make whoopee. (And I thought the cloning of the Turin shroud's DNA was weird.)

Japanese corporations cut workday to boost birth rate

Tokyo, Jan 26, 2009 / 08:49 pm (CNA).- Japanese electronics giant Canon and other, seeking to boost Japan’s flagging birth rate, now allows employees to leave early twice a week to encourage them to have more children.

The Japanese birth rate is 1.34 children per woman, well below the 2.1 required to maintain population size, CNN reports. Its population is aging at a faster pace than any other country in the world.

Japan’s 12-hour workday is one factor blamed for the low birth rate, in addition to the country’s high cost of living and social rigidity towards women and parenting.

"It's great that we can go home early and not feel ashamed," Canon employee Miwa Iwasaki told CNN.

"Canon has a very strong birth planning program," Canon spokesman Hiroshi Yoshinaga said to CNN. "Sending workers home early to be with their families is a part of it."

Canon’s 5:30 pm “lights-out” program also helps the company cut overtime expenses during the global economic downturn.

Keidanren, Japan’s largest business group with a membership of 1,300 major corporations, has asked its members to let employees go home early to spend time with families and help improve the birth rate.

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