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Macron to Rush Parliamentary Pension Bill Into General Strike

PARIS – France’s general strike has reached its 41st day, with the government accused of deliberately creating confusion, leading to growing disunity between unions.
The administration of President Emmanuel Macron issued what it claimed to be a compromise – a withdrawal of a 2-year raises at retirement age – but then declared that the concession would only be a temporary postponement. Worse, the government has not said when the delay will start or end.
Leaders of the country’s largest union immediately accepted the postponement of the age hike, saying they are not entirely opposed to Macron’s radical and unprecedented pension plan.
Other unions are rejecting the rising ages and insisting on the plan’s complete withdrawal, largely because the details were not released until last week and yet they will be rushed to parliament on January 24.
The strike was largely based on the sacrifices of public transport workers, mainly training workers.
Confusion and disunity may be the reason why their participation in the strike has fallen to its lowest level to date. The Macron administration only negotiated for a few days, although nearly six weeks of strikes have been financially detrimental to many workers and their families.
Support for the strike remains above 60%, while Macron’s popularity has fallen to 25%, close to its record level. Many here say that if people do not start participating in strikes and protests on a regular basis, it may be too late to save their retirement systems.
Hospital workers have launched an unprecedented strike and many unions have called for a three-day strike this week.
It seems that the French unions are finally taking the strike seriously, which makes this week critical in the longest workers’ movement in the history of France.
(Sahar News Monitoring Desk)

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