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Foreign Teachers Wasting Money (2004)
Foreigners and pensions.
Recently the media have been full of reports of politicians not paying their pension premiums, while at the same advising people in the nation to pay up. I have been paying (compulsory) premiums into the Private Schools Employees Fund (Shigaku Kyosai) for the past 10 years. I know that you must be enrolled for 25 years before you can receive the pension after age 65 (50 percent of your average pay), and that there is a one-off payout if you opt out of the plan.
After flicking through the guidebook, I came across a startling piece of information. A person who opts out of the plan after 10 years gets a one-off payout equal to 220 days of salary if he or she is Japanese. But if you are not Japanese, you only get 80 days pay. The payout for Japanese goes as high as 550 days, but the poor old gaijin teacher plateaus out at 80 days after three years. This means that, if you pay the pension for more than three but less than 24 years, you're losing out just because of your nationality. This is blatantly racist and a huge ripoff.
At least I have a chance of filling the 25-year minimum to get my pension, but I feel sorry for the many who are given limited-term contracts and are forced to quit after expiration and then go home. They have been supplementing the Japanese teachers' pension. Another question I have is why foreign teachers don't protest. This is indisputable racism by the pension system.
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