CGT

How people power during a bin strike helped end a union's dominance in Marseille

France

A 16-day strike by refuse collectors has just come to an end in the southern French city of Marseille. It was the third such stoppage there in three months and on the surface it was yet another routine dispute involving municipal staff in a city that is no stranger to industrial strife. But in reality the deal struck between the local authority and union officials, which came amid growing anger from local residents at the state of the Mediterranean city's streets, has ended an unwritten and cosy arrangement between City Hall and a favoured trade union that stretches back more than seven decades. Some observers have described the outcome as no less than a “revolution”. Olivier Bertrand explains.

Union boss warns Macron's pension reforms 'playing with fire'

France— Link

In an interview with The Guardian, Philippe Martinez, head of one of France's biggest cross-trades unions and which has spearheaded the opposition to Emmanuel Macron's plans to reform the pension scheme, said the French president 'is so sure of himself, but he’s playing with fire', warning that the 'rancour' created by the reforms will be paid by the government 'one day or another'.   

President Macron sets political trap for France's railway workers

France— Analysis

A government-commissioned report on France's railway sector has put reform of the employment status and supposedly “exorbitant privileges” of the country's railway workers firmly at the centre of the political agenda. These changes would themselves save around 100 million to 150 million euros in savings over ten years – a modest amount compared with the massive debts of the train operator SNCF. But as Martine Orange reports, the French presidency's real aim is to win a political battle by getting pubic opinion on its side.

Angry French food couriers deliver protest at pay change

France

The meal delivery company Deliveroo, which uses 7,500 couriers across France, is ending its system of paying its riders by the hour. This has led to protests from many of the food couriers who say they will end up earning hundreds of euros a month less. As Dan Israel reports, the move also shines a light on the precarious livelihoods of those working in this and other sections of the 'gig' economy.

The duty to protest

France— Opinion

Last week the French authorities banned a planned march in Paris by trade unions opposed to labour law reforms, before eventually backing down partially and allowing a more limited demonstration. Here Mediapart's editor-in-chief Edwy Plenel argues that demonstrating is a constitutional right and that, by banning the march that the trade unions wanted, the government violated the fundamental law that guarantees all our freedoms. It is, he writes, our duty to resist this unlawful act in order to defend our common ideal: democracy.

Fresh protests across France against labour reforms

France— Link

Police put the turnout for the peaceful march - initially banned by the authorities - at up to 20,000 while unions said figure was closer to 60,000.

France labour dispute: now ban on Paris protest is 'lifted'

France— Link

CGT union boss said authorities' U-turn on march was a 'victory for democracy' and urged workers to turn out in 'massive' numbers on Thursday.

French authorities ban labour protest march in Paris

France— Link

Move by Paris police to ban Thursday's march could increases tension between socialist government and unions opposed to labour reforms.

French unions to defy government ban on labour protest march

France— Link

Authorities had asked unions to scrap plans for Paris march in favour of a static rally to avoid violence which marred previous protests.

Rubbish piles up in Paris as binmen join anti-labour law reform protests

France— Link

Blockades at waste collection centres are preventing rubbish collection in the capital and other cities, while strikes are also disrupting rail services.

Blockades are a 'weapon to make people aware' say French labour law protesters

France— Report

Amid blockades of oil depots and strikes in a number of key sectors in France, opponents against planned labour law reforms in France took to the streets again on Thursday May 26th. Mediapart spoke to people taking part in a march in the city of Montpellier, in the south of France, to find out why they are protesting. The demonstrators say they fully back the strikes and blockades which they see as their equivalent of article 49-3 of the French Constitution which is being used to force the deeply-controversial reforms through Parliament. Timothée Aldebert reports.

France labour dispute: wave of strike action nationwide

France— Link

Oil refineries, nuclear power plants and transport hubs were hit, motorways and bridges were blocked and protesters clashed with police.

France turns to oil reserves as unions blockade fuel depots

France— Link

Head of France's oil industry federation says country has been using reserves, which could last for three months, for first time since 2010.

The anger and doubts fuelling France's oil refinery protests

France— Analysis

Many oil refinery workers, rail workers and aviation staff are on strike or set to go out on strike as France suffers fuel shortages and a power struggle between the government and those opposed to controversial labour law reforms. Union activists have criticised the “extremely violent” actions of the state in removing the blockade at the Fos-sur-Mer oil refinery in the south of France. But despite the growing impact of their industrial action, union militants admit that they will not continue the action on their own indefinitely without the help of workers in other sectors. Mathilde Goanec reports.

French police clear strikers from refinery amid labour reform standoff

France— Link

Prime minister Valls warned other pickets would be dealt with 'extremely firmly' while union boss said they would 'see this through to the finish'.