The strike, which has the support of leading gilets jaunes members, is set to start with a day of mass protest on December 5 - but railway workers have warned of ongoing, indefinite action in the run-up to Christmas.
Rail disruptions will begin at 22h on Wednesday, December 4, when workers with SNCF and RATP - the Paris regional transport authority - officially walk out. The effects on rail travel is expected to be widespread, particularly in Paris, with TGV, Transilien, Ouigo, TER, Intercités, Lyria, Thalys, Eurostar, RER A, B, C, D and T4 of the tramway all expected to be hit.
France's Secretary of State for Transport Jean-Baptiste Djebbari warned this week of "a very well attended strike", adding "we must take preventive measures upstream."
Of the main railway unions, only the moderate CFDT has yet to formally call for a strike as it waits to see government proposals, while the RATP has moved to ameliorate the disruption by offering alternative transport methods in the capital, while the President of the Île-de-France Region, Valérie Pécresse, said in an interview on Franceinfo: "I told SNCF and RATP: 'Ensure the minimum service otherwise, we will have to reimburse passengers'. The continuity of public services must be ensured."
Air travellers have been warned that they could experience delays or cancelled flights at numerous airports across the country on December 5, as Air France air and ground crews join the strike.
It is not just transport that is affected. The CGT's public service arm has called on its members to use the December 5 protest as a building block 'to construct' an indefinite rolling protest against the reforms.
Postal workers, are also expected to add their weight to the protests. La Poste is going through a reorganisation process and has been affected by strikes for several weeks. "Working conditions and the protection of public service are subjects that are part of the debate," said a representative of the CGT-Fapt.
Unsa-Éducation has also called on its members to strike, but the Ministry of Education has said that it has not received notice of strike action.
The union is critical of a future pension system that penalises "teachers who receive few allowances and bonuses".
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