demonstrations and strikes throughout France measure this Tuesday, social discontent with new president
Emmanuel Macron will be submitted this Tuesday to first exam of street. The day of strike and demonstrations called by CGT union and or central minority will measure social discontent with a president who in may won elections with promise to transform France. The aim of protests was to stop a labour reform that, among or measures facilitates recruitment and dismissal. Macron, which has a comfortable parliamentary majority, has already said that it will maintain its plans to adopt new laws at end of month. A statement from president calling “vague” critics of reform grew warm with atmosphere prior to protests.
Tens of thousands of people marched in several French cities. In Paris, between Bastille square and gate of Italy, were to 24,000, according to Prefecture; to 60,000, according to CGT union. In any case, a number of attendees lower than that of first demonstration against labor reform of president François Hollande, in march of 2016. The protest in Paris ended with incidents timely and tear gas. It was a mass demonstration, festive almost all time, but not massive. Hardly dissuaded Macron to continue with his reformist program.
Coinciding with protest, Macron flew to French territory of St. Martin, in Antilles, devastated by hurricane Irma. The trip responded to urgent need by natural catastrophe. But it was also a signal that president has moved on from labour market reform — da approved and you do not want to touch or a coma— and you want to take care of or matters. In last few days, he and his Government have multiplied announcements about upcoming reforms, for example in tax and social security. Televisions, French competed on Tuesday in images of ruins of San Martín and of trade unionists, protesting.
- Five points to understand labour market reform of France
- The popularity of Macron is still in free-fall,
- Martinez, union leader: “I've said to Macron: ‘Be humble,”
- FOTOGALERÍWing general strike in France in images
The CGT and or organizers have convened a 180 marches across France and appeals to strike in 4,000 companies. The strike affected, among or sectors, transport, although not crippled country. The unions came divided. Of big three, only participated by CGT, more leftist. The leaders of reformist CFDT and Force Ouvrière (FO) refused to participate, although members of latter are indicated next to CGT. The protest was joined by leader of left alternative in National Assembly, Jean-Luc Mélenchon.
The slogans were not only against labour reform, but also against or measures of president. At times it seemed more a manifestation of anti-Macron that anti-labor reform. Last week, during his visit to Greece, Macron said: "don't relent on anything, nor vague, nor cynical, nor to extremes." The word fainéant —slackers, or lazy— it was hurtful to many French, though in context of discourse Macron possibly used to designate politicians who instead of working for reforms y prefer to sit idly by. The protesters made ir own slogan: "Slackers of world unite!", said a poster ironic. "In praise of laziness," read anor.
The labor reform is first major legislative project of presidency of centrist Macron. On 31 August, prime minister, Édouard Philippe, and introduced five ordinances which consists reform. The ordinances are legislative texts that may be approved without going through process of debates and amendments by Parliament. The Government submits to Parliament and adopts or rejects it. The reform establishes limits on compensation for unfair dismissal; and offers more freedom to multinational companies to dismiss workers in event of a crisis; streamlines labour bargaining in small businesses, who can reach agreements bypassing unions; and simplifying instances of negotiation within companies.
The day of protest and strike is first of several in September. On day 21 CGT for anor protest, and on 23 France Insumisa — party of mr Mélenchon— has called for anor demonstration in Paris. Next to Philippe Martinez, head of CGT, Mélenchon is postulated as main opponent to reforms of Macron, which is considered a “social coup”. On Tuesday in Marseille, where he participated in local manifestation, Mélenchon declared himself confident that protests do “pull back” to Government. It may be too late. With popularity of low, to Macron this would be first real legislative victory of his presidency, first of a series of key reforms in his plan to revive France.