Civil servants' walkout: widespread disruption feared

130 demonstrations are planned across the country as part of Tuesday's nationwide public workers' strike

Strike notices lodged in schools, hospitals, airports and government ministries

A national strike by public service workers is set to cause disruption on Tuesday.

Strike notices have been lodged in schools, hospitals, airports and government ministries, as unions call on members to walk out over labour reforms, as well as plans to axe 120,000 jobs and cut sick leave payments.

It is the first time in a decade that all nine unions, who represent 5.4million public workers in France, have united for a day of protest. In total, 130 demonstrations and rallies are planned across the country.

As reported, France's civil aviation authority has asked airlines to cancel a third of flights on Tuesday, as a result of the walkout. Easyjet has cancelled a number of flights, warning affected passengers by SMS or email, and warned customers that services through French airspace will be subject to disruption

But SNCF has said that it expects little disturbance to rail services, with TGV, Transilien, TER, Eurostar and Thalys operations expected to run as normal.

Routine operations and medical procedures - even GP appointments - may be cancelled, with a dozen unions calling on doctors and nurses to join the walkout. The strike call includes pharmacists and dentists.

Meanwhile, teachers' union Snuipp-FSU 75 has warned that up to 70 schools in Paris will be forced to close, with up to half of all primary school teachers in the capital set to join the strike, and Europe1 reports that many schools that expect to stay open have advised parents to provide a packed lunch for their children, as some canteens will be closed.

In Rennes, 10 schools are expected to remain closed, while 26 canteens will serve no meals, and morning and afternoon 'garderie' services will be cut in up to 41 establishments, France Bleu Armorique has said.

Libraries, post offices and nurseries could also remain closed.

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