The Japanese Equal Employment Opportunity Law: Its Effects on Personnel Management Policies and Women's Attitudes
May 1985 the Japanese government passed the Equal Employment Opportunity Law (hereafter referred to as EEO Law) which took effect from April 1986. The enactment of the EEO Law has aroused much controversy and debate unprecedented in the history of lbour legislation in Japan. It prohibits discrimination against women in vocational training, fringe benefits, retirement and dismissal. It also urges employers to 'endavour' to treat women equally with men with regard to recruitment, job assignment and promotion. This paper analyses the nature of the EEO Law and looks at its effects on companies' personnel policies. It also examines how the law has affected Japanese women's career consciousness based on attitude surveys conducted at a 'good practice' company before and after the enactment of the law.