pension reform

France’s Constitutional Council rejects bid for pension referendum

France — Link

The council said in a statement that the proposed referendum did not meet the legal criteria as defined in the constitution.

How the power of ridicule has again become a feared weapon in French protest politics

Politique — Analysis

After its deeply-unpopular pension reform was forced into law, the government of President Emmanuel Macron set itself a target of 100 days to calm the country and reduce the level of protest. But instead the tone and style of the protests have simply changed; from outright anger to one of mockery. As Mathieu Dejean writes, the government is right to worry about the new derision it faces. For mockery and ridicule have triumphed over inflexible governments in the past.

Macron visit to Netherlands soured by protests and Taiwan comments

International — Link

French President Emmanuel Macron's two-day state visit to the Netherlands was on Wednesday dogged by further protests over his pension reforms at home, and his controversial comments urging European nations to act independently from the US over increasing tensions between China and Taiwan.     

French pension reform protests: bistro liked by Macron is attacked

France — Link

Riot police had to form a barricade around La Rotonde bistro, which was briefly set on fire, as France saw the 11th day of unrest since January over legislation raising the retirement age by two years to 64.

Hundreds of thousands to continue strikes and protests in France

France — Link

Fears of more violent clashes with police as demonstrations against President Macron’s unpopular pensions policy to carry on.

Ex-UK envoy says Versailles banquet for Charles amid strife 'bad idea'

France — Link

Commenting on the postponing of the state visit to France by King Charles because of the disruption of protests over over pension reforms, Peter Ricketts, British ambassador to France between 2012 and 2016, said the planned banquet in the palace of Versailles would have been a 'particularly bad idea', with 'all kinds of echoes from the past going back to the revolution'. 

'Endgame' for protesters hoping to sink Macron's pension plan

Économie et social — Link

Unions hope they can still force Macron to back down as parliament debates the draft law, with the National Assembly and the Senate moving towards a final vote as early as this month.

Pension reform in France: the grandmother of all battles

Politique — Opinion

The battle against the French government's pension reform is not simply just another protest movement. Three crucial issues are at stake here: social, democratic and civilisational, as shown by the exceptional unity among trade unions opposed to the changes, argues Mediapart’s publishing editor Edwy Plenel in this op-ed article. All the more reason, he writes, to put all our energy into supporting this combat.

French Senate votes to raise retirement age from 62 to 64

France — Link

The conservative-dominated Senate is rushing to meet a deadline of midnight Sunday to finalise the legislation.

March against French pension reforms on International Women’s Day

France — Link

Campaigners say the government's proposals would further deepen gender inequalities at workplaces in France.

Macron's pension reforms – a symbol of regime crisis

Politique — Opinion

The brutality, stubbornness and indifference of the French government – as exemplified by its current pension reforms - is exposing the country to deep democratic dangers. A combination of political democracy and economic democracy is the only viable alternative to the breakdown of France's Fifth Republic, argue Mediapart's Fabien Escalona and Romaric Godin in this op-ed article.

France's controversial pension reform bill arrives in Senate

France — Link

Government is banking on support from Senators belonging to the conservative Les Republicains (LR) party, who favour raising the minimum legal retirement age from 62 to 64, and having citizens work longer to obtain a full pension.

How pension reform flip-flops have exposed the fickle nature of Macron's government

Politique — Analysis

The current bitterly-opposed pension reforms proposed by the French government are purely designed to save money and have no broader social dimension. This means that President Emmanuel Macron and his supporters are now defending a reform measure which is diametrically opposed to the initial plan they had put forward back in 2017. This U-turn tells us a great deal about the flaws and limp nature of the government writes Ellen Salvi in this analysis of how and why the pension reform plan changed so radically during President Macron's time in office.

New protests test French government's resolve on pension reform

France — Link

French unions said more than 2.5 million protesters took the the streets across the nation on Saturday to keep up the pressure on the government over its deeply unpopular pensions reform.

'You can't work underground over the age of 60': why Marseille's sewer staff oppose pension reform

Retraites — Report

Unlike their counterparts in Paris, who can retire at the age of 52, sewer workers in Marseille are employed by a private company. This means they have to keep working until they reach 62 – and this will increase to 64 if the current pension reform plans are passed. These workers in the Mediterranean city are bitterly opposed to any extension of their retirement age and believe they should be able to end their careers earlier, not later. They described their cramped, smelly and hazardous subterranean working life to Khedidja Zerouali.