Europe

French Unions: November 23, new protests

Nicolas Sarkozy

The General Confederation of Labor (CGT), which is leading the unions of the country, reiterated its calls saying that if 60 percent of French workers oppose the new retirement law, it is the duty of the unions to show discontent.
In fact, five French labor federations called for another national day of mobilization on November 23, despite internal differences.

The CGT will be joined by the Fédération syndicale unitaire FSU), Solidaires, the National Union of Autonomous Unions and the French Democratic Confederation of Labour (CFDT).
The CFDT has differences with the other federations over with the other because it supports negotiations on the issues of youth employment and women’s retirement with the national business owners’ association, the Medef.

The retirement reform was approved by Parliament and is awaiting a report from the Constitutional Council before it can be signed into law by President Nicolas Sarkozy.

The reform’s review in the Constitutional Council was proposed by the opposition Socialist Party (PS), but has very little chance of succeeding, and the law’s implementation is imminent, raising the retirement age from 60 to 62.

The unions announced they would organize rallies, strikes, protests and demonstrations throughout France on November 23. PL

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