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Lightboat: a website to help foreign workers in Japan

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Unswerving cyclist
14 Mar 2002
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Meguro-based IT company Lightworks and a lawyer are offering a free website to help foreign workers learn about life in Japan. The website is aimed mainly at technical trainees from Vietnam and elsewhere and is only in Japanese and Vietnamese. The aim is to help foreign interns who usually do not want to return to Japan after they experience inhumane working conditions under the nation’s on-the-job training program for those from overseas: five-minute animated videos are available in Vietnamese and simple Japanese and come in categories such as “How to work in Japan” and “How to take out the trash.”

The project started when Shingo Saito, 44, an executive of the IT firm Lightworks Corp. in Tokyo who resides in Meguro Ward, heard that "more and more Vietnamese have negative views of Japan" at a Japanese language school in Vietnam while on a business trip. Vietnamese often travel to Japan as foreign interns and many employers overwork them. They then come to reportedly hate the nation. Eleven percent of interns who had returned to their own countries said they had been "mentally abused by Japanese," according to the government-authorized Organization for Technical Intern Training's findings in a fiscal 2020 survey. Those who said they had been "beaten by Japanese" or "prohibited from dating" each accounted for 2 per cent.



Lightboat is a website for technical trainees from Vietnam and elsewhere to learn about life in Japan: information on legal matters and local customs essential to living in Japan (in easy Japanese and Vietnamese).


Sailing away...
Top Donor
3 Aug 2007
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Its nice that this service is being provided. I wonder if it will actually help those who are being abused though. Perhaps with its legal content? It seems like, no matter which country, imported labor is not always treated the best.

Going forward, and even right now, this is going to be a pretty big issue as there are so many jobs that will not be able to be filled by Japanese because of the low birthrates. Those foreign workers are important to fill those jobs. I think it may well be important for people to think that those foreign workers could be the ones taking care of themselves or their loved ones at some point as there will be more an more need for them in the nursing and other medical fields.
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