2 octobre 2023

Daily Impact European

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Pension reform: record mobilization on January 31 in France

1.272 million people demonstrated on Tuesday throughout France, according to the Ministry of the Interior, a record against social reform.

1.272 million people demonstrated on Tuesday throughout France, according to the Ministry of the Interior, a record against social reform since 1984.

The second day of mobilization against the pension reform brought together even more people this Tuesday in the streets of France. While waiting for two new days of action, the text continues to be studied this Wednesday in the Social Affairs Committee of the National Assembly.

The rate of strikers reached 36.5% at the SNCF for the second day of mobilization, against 46.3% during the first, on January 19, a union source told franceinfo. This is a provisional count, according to the management of the SNCF, which did not wish to confirm these figures.

The ministry counted a rate of striking teachers of 25.92%, including 26.65% in primary and 25.22% in secondary (colleges and high schools), this Tuesday, January 31. Rates lower than those of January 19: the rate of striking teachers was 38.5% on a weighted average, according to the ministry, including 42.35% in primary education and 34.66% in secondary education. This Tuesday, the Snes-FSU, the first secondary union, claimed a rate of 55% of striking college and high school teachers.

In addition, the ministry announced 19.4% of strikers in the state civil service, against 28% on January 19. In the territorial public service, the rate of strikers was also down, to 7.9% against 11.3% on January 19, as well as in the hospital public service (8.5% against 9.9%), a said the ministry.

The CGT has claimed 75 to 100% of strikers in the refineries and depots of TotalEnergies, depending on the site. The Normandy refinery had 75% of strikers, those of Feyzin (Rhône) and Donges (Loire-Atlantique) had 80 and 90% of strikers respectively, the same thing at the bio-refinery of La Mède (Bouches-du-Rhône), and the fuel depot in Flanders (North) was on 100% strike, according to Eric Sellini, national union coordinator for TotalEnergies. The management of the group estimated for its part that the rate of strikers rose this Tuesday to 55% against 65% on January 19.

The rate of strikers at EDF rose this Tuesday evening to 46.5% of the total workforce, against 50% during the first day of mobilization, announced the management of the electrician group.

Several nuclear power plants, as well as the coal-fired power plant of Cordemais (Loire-Atlantique) or the thermal power plant of Martigues (Bouches-du-Rhône) have also been affected by this movement which has “no impact” for users, but affects “commercial exchanges” of energy, according to Fabrice Coudour, federal secretary of the FNME-CGT.

It is a surprising mobilization that can be seen in the processions of the demonstrations against the pension reform. Worried about their future, young people march through the streets.

After the demonstrations of January 19 and January 31, the inter-union again calls on the French to take to the streets against the pension reform.

This Tuesday, January 31, 2.8 million people demonstrated according to the CGT union, 1.272 million according to the police. Figures higher than the mobilization of twelve days ago. In Paris, the union claimed 500,000 demonstrators, against 87,000 on the side of the authorities

the intersyndicale has already announced two new days of mobilization: Tuesday 7 and Saturday 11 February.

A new strike call has been launched for February 6, 7 and 8, at EDF and other companies in the electricity and gas industries in France, said Fabrice Coudour, national secretary at the FNME-CGT (National Federation of Mines and Energy-CGT).

The refiners have already announced a 72-hour strike from February 6, while the CGT Cheminots and SUD-Rail have proposed a strike on February 7 and 8, possibly before a renewable strike from mid-February.

The RATP unions are calling for two new days of strike on Tuesday February 7 and Saturday February 11 against the pension reform, following the slogan launched by the main French unions on Tuesday evening.

After asserting that the decline in the legal age of departure to 64 was “no longer negotiable”, Elisabeth Borne said yesterday “to hear” the “questions and doubts” that the reform may raise. But for the unions, the Prime Minister “is not open to dialogue”. “The government remains deaf to popular mobilization but also to the work of parliamentarians in committee”.

Youth mobilization

In total, 150,000 young people took to the streets this Tuesday all over France, against the pension reform, according to figures from Unef, the national union of students in France, communicated on Tuesday evening. Earlier in the day, high school students gathered in front of several establishments, notably at the call of La Voix lycéenne, the FIDL and the MNL.

On the student side, rallies also took place in the morning, such as at the Saint-Charles site of Aix-Marseille University, where a picket was set up. For its part, Sciences Po Paris was occupied overnight by around fifty students. The last of them left the scene around 10 a.m.