Nationwide Strike in France
Submitted by Mary on Wed 23rd June, 2010 - 1:19 pm
Teachers will be walking out in France tomorrow as part of a nationwide strike across all industries, in protest against government attempts to increase the retirement age from 60 to 62.
Over half of primary school teachers will join other workers on strike tomorrow, in what is set to be the biggest industrial action of its kind in France this year - larger even than the one-million who came out on the 27th May. The largest teaching union, SNUipp-FSU, have said that 52.5% of their members will walk out, meaning that in Paris alone, 80 schools will shut for the day, with more closed across the country.
In 1982, Francois Mitterrand cut the retirement age from 65, giving both men and women the right to retire at 60. However, Sarkozy’s government plan to raise this by four months ever year until 2018, bringing the retirement age up to 62. Additionally, if workers want full pensions, they will not be able to retire at 65, as is currently the case, but will have to work until they are 67.
According to a poll published in Le Parisien, the union's have the support of the majority of the public, who also oppose the reform. In 1995, strikes by transport workers forced Jacques Chirac to drop his attempt to cancel their retirement privileges.