France strike 'will have limited effect'

Transport Minister insists 'inter-professional day of action' planned for Thursday will have little effect on services

14 September 2020
By Brian McCulloch

A planned strike on Thursday will cause 'limited or non-existent' disruption to France's rail services, Transport Minister Jean-Baptiste Djebbari has said.

Rail unions, including CGT Cheminots, have called for a “inter-professional day of action” on September 17.

and lodged a pre-avis with the government of their intention to strike, but only have to say who will walk out 48 hours before the strike begins.

Unions are demanding higher wages, more jobs, an end to pension reform, stronger ecological policies and a fairer distribution of the nation’s wealth.

As well as the railway workers, other branches of the CGT and civil service unions, including teachers, have said they will take part.

But Mr Djebbari said on Europe 1 radio on Monday that the strike call would probably not be followed by many people. He had previously said that the strike call, made by the CGT before the summer holidays was “a habitual call to strike.”

He promised that the government will do its best to warn people of any disruption but emphasised that it will only be able to plan effectively once the scale of the rail walkout was known.

“But the movement we were anticipating does not seem to be followed at this moment,” he said. “There is evidently not a mass call for mobilisation.”

A spokeswoman for CGT Cheminots told Connexion that not just rail workers were affected. It is an inter-professional day of action, so I do not know why the minister was singling out the railways in particular,” she said. “There are lots of people in lots of sectors who are unhappy with the government.”

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