Earthly Mission

Japan’s Disposal Workers: Net Cafe Refugees

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The recession of the 1990s increased the pressure on Japanese white-collar workers, instilling a fear-based culture where even working long hours does not guarantee job security, or a fine salary. Therefore, it is not surprising that in the mid 2000’s these workers began using Japanese Internet cafes, that have existed in Japan for over a decade, as living quarters. Internet cafe refugees are mostly temporary employees; their salary is just too low to rent their own apartments. This story won 3rd prize at the 5th annual World Press Photo Multimedia Contest.



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