Postal strikes loom for several areas of France

Delivering millions of political manifestos is a serious burden, workers say

A closed French post office with inset photo of electoral manifestos
Postal workers are going on strike to get compensation for the added burden of delivering political manifestos (inset from 2022 elections)
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Postal workers are going on strike in several areas of France and demanding higher pay due to the added burden of delivering dozens of political manifestos to each voter for the European Parliamentary elections.

A total of 28 political manifestos must be delivered to tens of millions of voters in France prior to the European elections between June 6 and 9, representing a significant added workload for the French postal service, La Poste.

The Toulouse (Haute-Garonne) and Nice (Alpes-Maritimes) CGT unions have announced their intention to strike between June 3 and 9, demanding “compensation” for affected postal workers. 

Several other areas have also given strike notice, including in Aimargues (Gard) and Chauny (Aisne), along with the Sud PTT 56 union in Brittany.

The CGT union is demanding that postal workers each receive a €500 bonus.

“Management is demanding a significant personal effort from all of the postal workers involved, even coming back after work on Saturdays. All this without even one extra Euro going into their pockets…,” announced Louis Durand, communication secretary of the CGT FAPT 31AP union.

Unions have a legal obligation to give notice when they decide to potentially strike, however this does not necessarily mean that a strike will go ahead. 

Indeed, not all postal workers are part of these unions and not all of those who are members will necessarily go on strike.

The post office responded with a statement to the strike notice, saying that “the workload will respect the 35-hour week and all overtime will be paid accordingly”.

Read more: June 9 EU elections: Priorities in France differ to rest of Europe

How many political manifestos must they deliver

A copy of each political manifesto, or profession de foi, is addressed to each eligible voter prior to the election, with all candidates subject to the same rules as to the format, which must:

  • Be printed on both sides of an A4 page, or folded in two as an A3

  • Include the names and prospective roles of the candidates 

  • Include a QR code 

  • Not include France’s national colours red, white and blue so prominently as to convince people that the document is an official communiqué

While there are 38 parties competing for the European elections, only 28 are distributing their manifestos through the post due to costs.