Tokyo (AFP)

Japanese auto giant Toyota has apologized and reached an amicable settlement with the family of an employee who committed suicide in 2017 after being the victim of bullying, AFP learned Monday. business.

The suicide of this 28-year-old engineer was the consequence of psychological disorders resulting from harassment by his direct superior, a regional body of the Ministry of Labor had determined in 2019.

Toyota reached an out-of-court settlement with the family in April, a spokesperson for the group told AFP.

The amount of compensation paid was not disclosed.

The young employee, whose name has not been made public, had worked for Toyota for a year and a half when he terminated his life in October 2017. His supervisor allegedly told him that he "had better die ", according to Japanese media.

This framework was "sanctioned", said Toyota, without giving more details.

The group's CEO, Akio Toyoda, recently visited the family to apologize and explain the measures put in place to prevent such a tragedy from happening again, according to Yoshihide Tachino, the lawyer for the parents of the group. victim interviewed by AFP.

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“We still feel in our hearts the pain of what happened to our beloved son,” the family said in a statement.

Toyota offered its "heartfelt condolences" for the "tragic" death of the engineer and said "pray for the rest of his soul," according to a statement from the group released Monday.

"We take very seriously the fact that the precious life of an employee has been lost," added the manufacturer, claiming to have "implemented measures to prevent the recurrence of such a tragic accident".

"Japan remains known for its harsh working conditions" and a high number of fatalities from exhaustion, said Tachino, noting that the number of complaints against harassment at work was on the increase.

The fact that a giant like Toyota, emblematic of large Japanese companies, recognized the harassment "is symbolic", said the lawyer, hoping that this would help improve working conditions in the Archipelago, which deplores the rate of highest suicide among G7 countries.

The problem of overwork at work is also more publicized in Japan since the suicide in 2015 of an employee of the advertising group Dentsu, attributed to excessive overtime.

© 2021 AFP