Socialist Worker

Mass French strike to defend workers’ rights

Issue No. 2571

Students protested the Work Law last year

Students protested the Work Law last year (Pic: Pic: Force Ouvriere at flickr.com)


Strikers, students and activists were marching through the major cities of France as Socialist Worker went to press on Tuesday in a day of strikes and protests.

Called by the CGT union federation and other unions, the day of action was called to resist president Emmanuel Macron’s attack on workers’ rights.

He plans a worse version of former president Francois Hollande’s Labour Law last year. His decrees would make it easier for bosses to impose longer hours, lower pay and layoffs.

Macron added to the anger on Friday of last week when he said, “I will not give an inch to the lazy, the cynical or the extremists.”

Strikes were called in over 4,000 workplaces including air traffic control, oil refineries and public services.

Bus and train strikes disrupted public transport and students shut down their colleges. More than 180 demonstrations took place around France.

There is competition to lead the movement. Left wing MP Jean-Luc Melenchon has called a march for Saturday 23 September. The CGT leadership criticised him, and called a further day of action on 21 Setember.

But the most important force in the fight are the workers and students who are spoiling for a fight against Macron and the system he represents.


 


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