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A private school recently told me by e-mail that I would work only one day a week, that I should not leave Japan for Golden Week (first week of May) without getting the school’s consent, and that a school doctor would run tests on me before I would be allowed to resume teaching at the school!

My wife was told earlier this month that when she leaves Japan this July, she would not be allowed to return to her company for 10 days after re-entering Japan as a precaution, and that the company would not pay her for these days! She must obey or she could lose her job. My wife’s company also contacted foreign guests from the United States and Canada last week to tell them that the company didn’t want to meet them because of the fear the guests might be tainted with the H1N1 virus and that the whole office could be contaminated.

This is outrageous. I cannot imagine an American company turning away business guests from several major Japanese companies if the situation was reversed and then saying, “Stay in Japan, we don’t want to catch anything from you.”

The World Health Organization has not restricted air travel, so why has Japan made its own rules and scared people like this? In the newspaper each day, I see ads for trips for two to Cancun, Mexico, and such. Why is this in a Japanese paper?

heber noda

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