Legislating for change? The Equal Employment Opportunity Law
In May 1985, the Japanese government passed the Equal Employment Opportunity Law (hereafter referred to as the EEO Law) which took effect from Apr il 1986. This law prohibits discrimination against women in vocational training, fringe benefits, retirement and dismissal. It also urges employers to ‘endeavour’ to treat women equally with men with regard to recruitment, job assignment and promotion. At the same time that the EEO Law was passed, the special protective measures for women provided in the Labour Standards Law of 1947 were amended. The purpose of this chapter is to examine the histor ical background leading to the enactment of the EEO Law, to describe and analyse its contents and to assess its potential impact on the elimination of discrimination against women.