Survey reveals money, health fears of single Japanese women in nonstaff jobs


Staff Writer

Roughly one in three unmarried middle-aged women in nonstaff jobs have an annual income of less than ¥1.5 million, or about ¥4,100 a day, according to a study that underscores the problem of low pay in one of the world’s most developed nations.

The October survey sampled 261 nonregular workers between 35 and 54 years of age who were female, single and without children.

Nearly 70 percent of respondents said they earn less than ¥2.5 million a year. About 30 percent reported annual incomes of less than ¥1.5 million.

Around 84 percent of the women said they were worried about their jobs, with most of them pointing to the low income. More than 80 percent of respondents expressed anxiety for the period of their lives after retirement.

A majority of respondents also expressed worries about their health, about having to nurse family members, and about being single.

Some 60 percent said they were in nonregular work because they weren’t able to find full-time jobs, the study showed. They said they were unhappy with their nonregular work status.

A more detailed report is scheduled to be released in March, according to the Yokohama Women’s Association for Communication and Networking, one of the organizations that conducted the study.

Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry figures show 56 percent of working women were in nonregular positions in 2015. The number of female nonregular workers aged between 44 and 54 rose by 120,000 to 3.3 million in 2015 from 3.18 million the previous year, while the figure for 25- to 34-year-olds was 1.92 million, down 90,000 from the year before.