For this project the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting commissioned MediaStorm to create a documentary based on Shiho Fukada’s portrait series, Japan’s Disposable Workers. In three sections the film explores the labor issues affecting Japan, and in so doing, illustrates the larger global labor crisis.
Japan’s Disposable Workers
• Chapter 1: Overworked to Suicide
After the recession of the 1990’s, Japan’s white collar salarymen increasingly must work arduous hours for fear of losing their jobs. This often leads to depression and suicide.
• Chapter 2: Net Cafe Refugees
Internet cafes have existed in Japan for over a decade, but in the mid 2000s, customers began using these spaces as living quarters. Internet cafe refugees are mostly temporary employees, their salary too low to rent their own apartments.
• Chapter 3: Dumping Ground
Kamagasaki, Osaka, Japan used to be a thriving day laborer’s town. Today, it is home to approximately 25,000 unemployed and elderly men, many of whom are also homeless.