- h/t; Yahoo News / @wildriverpeace
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Japanese city official's 3 minute routine of ordering a lunch box results in pay cut and public apology.
A 64-year-old staff member of the Water Work's Bureau of Kobe City in Japan has been punished for repeated trips to order lunch during working hours, Yahoo News and ABC Television reports. Over the course of September 2017 to March 2018, the man made 3 minute trips to a nearby lunch box store to place an order 26 times. The city has tallied up the estimated time of the trips and docked the worker half a day's pay as punishment, and issued a televised formal apology for the "scandal". Many on Twitter are denouncing the decision as inhumane and dark extremity of apology culture in Japan.
The city official's three minute excursions were found out by another official spotting him outside the office placing an order at a lunch box store from an office window, resulting in a punishment of docked pay and prompting a press conference to issue a formal apology. At the press conference, a city representative bowed and said "It's very regrettable that such a scandal took place, we are deeply sorry."
In Japan, shazai kaiken, or press conferences called for the sake of a public apology, are often held as an important mea culpa in the wake of company, political, and even school scandals. When issuing a public apology, full transparency is key and details such as wording, clothing, and even the degree and length of an apologetic bow cannot be overlooked. However, many on Japanese social media are voicing disapproval and even disgust with the apology and punishment issued by Kobe City, expressing concerns with policies in the workplace.
"Is going to the bathroom now strictly prohibited as well?"
"What a stupid world. No more tea breaks, smoke breaks, or chatting.
"This is too intolerant."
"Getting the personnel and venue to hold the conference seems like a bigger expense."
"Is his boss an idiot? If they have time to count up 26 trips to the lunch box shop, they're the ones who need to be told to get back to work."