Pension Reform: 23rd Day of Mobilisation Before Another Complicated Weekend

General News
The movement against pension reform is now longer than the strikes of 1995. New rallies are expected on Saturday December 28.

The movement against pension reform is now longer than the strikes of 1995. New rallies are expected on Saturday 28th December 

Now longer than the strikes of 1995, the movement against pension reform is in its 23rd day, with determined unions and travellers preparing for another complicated weekend in transport.

SNCF traffic remains “very disrupted” with an average of 6 TGVs out of 10, 1 Transilien (SNCF RER and Parisian suburban trains) out of 5, and 4 TER trains out of 10, a large part of which is provided by replacement buses.

At RATP, five lines of the Paris metro remain closed, but RER A and RER B run most of the day, a first since the start of the movement.

Rail: traffic forecasts
Rail: traffic forecasts. (© AFP / AFP)

“It’s a strong movement”

Early Friday morning, Philippe Martinez, the general secretary of the CGT, visited strikers in a RATP bus depot in Vitry-sur-Seine (Val-de-Marne).



Calling for the withdrawal of the executive’s plan to replace the 42 existing pension plans with a “universal system” by points, and to introduce a pivotal age at 64, accompanied by a bonus-penalty, he denounced “the feverishness of the government “.

“It is a strong movement, which is still supported by public opinion,” he said.

Demonstration at Gare de l'Est in Paris, December 26, 2019, against pension reform. (© AFP / STEPHANE DE SAKUTIN. Demonstration at Gare de l'Est in Paris, December 26, 2019, against reform retirements)
Demonstration at Gare de l’Est in Paris, December 26, 2019, against pension reform. (© AFP / STEPHANE DE SAKUTIN. Demonstration at Gare de l’Est in Paris, December 26, 2019, against reform retirements)

Guarantees for seafarers

No truce was reached, despite the appeals of Emmanuel Macron and members of the government, but also of the general secretary of the CFDT, Laurent Berger, who supports the principle of a universal pension system, like the CFTC and the Unsa.

In a press release, Force Ouvrière welcomed the first fruits of the strike and the demonstrations on Friday, citing the delay in applying the reform to people born after 1975, or even beyond.

In addition, “decisions seem to indicate that certain specific regimes or provisions may remain (military and gendarmes, air transport aircrew, police, seafarers, liberal professions …”, welcomed FO for whom, however “the time is still and always on the move ”

Because if Laurent Pietraszewski, the “M. Retraites” of the government, warned that there was no question of going back on the “abolition of special regimes”, breaches open and the government has already provided for exceptions.

Thus, four hostess unions and stewards suspended their call to strike from January 3 after obtaining guarantees from the executive. And on the pilot side, the SNPL France Alpa, the majority union, has obtained the maintenance of the possibility of retiring at full rate at 60, among others. The notice will be lifted once the commitments have been received in writing, according to the union.

Call for a rally on Saturday

After a week marked by initiatives, local gatherings are expected everywhere in France on Saturday, at the call of the CGT-Cheminots and SUD-Rail.

The actions will continue next week, at a slower holiday pace obliges, FO announcing in particular operations of distribution of leaflets on the markets, in the shopping centres, at highway tolls…

From January 3, initiatives should resume in intensity.

The SOS Retraites collective, which brings together 16 liberal professions with autonomous regimes, calls for strikes from this date. In their ranks: liberal nurses, speech therapists, lawyers, physiotherapists, accountants…

“Government dogmatism”

He denounces a “dogmatism of the government” and “sham concertation”. The reform would amount to “making a state hold-up” on the reserves, or even “doubling the contributions” paid by certain professions, without guarantee on the maintenance of pensions, estimates the collective.

The conflict, now as long as that of 1995 in transport (22 days), seems set to surpass the record of 28 days reached in 1986/87 at the SNCF, also without Christmas break, for wages and working conditions. job.

January 9th is scheduled the fourth day of strikes and interprofessional demonstrations at the call of the CGT, Force Ouvrière, the FSU and Solidaires, and youth organizations.

Two days earlier, on the 7th, consultations will have resumed between the government and the trade union and employers’ organizations, before the bill was presented to the Council of Ministers on January 22.

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