ORIGINAL FRENCH ARTICLE: Retraites : une nouvelle journée d’actions "multiforme"
Translated Tuesday 9 November 2010, by Henry Crapoand reviewed by
The joint trade union coordinating committee is not giving up the fight and plans a ninth national day of mobilization.
The joint trade union coordinating committee called early Monday (Nov. 8) evening for another “national, all-trades day of mobilization” on Nov. 23, “using multi-form actions” against the law on retirement reform.
Four trade union confederations – the CFDT, the CGT, the FSU and Solidaires – asked their “regional and craft organizations to define the modalities,” which notably can include rallies, meetings, and work stoppages, according to the communiqué published following the meeting of the coordinating committee.
Two trade union confederations – the CFTC and the CFE-CGC – participated in the coordinating committee meeting but did not sign the communiqué.
All of the confederations, with the exception of the Force ouvrière confederation, said before the meeting that they would strive for a just compromise in order to maintain unity, which has held up since last Spring.
The CGT believes that it is necessary to strike while the iron is hot and to act before July 2011 when the law comes into force, but many spoke of a sequel to the retirement reform struggle, discussing a return to big demonstrations for jobs and purchasing power, on the model of the Winter 2009 demonstrations.
On the heels of a citizen mobilization at a level that has not been seen for years, even though the trade unions have not won a radical victory on retirement reform, “we must not now give the government such a present as becoming disunited,” warned Alain Olive, the general secretary of the UNSA trade union confederation.
“What is at stake is showing that on one of the essential elements of the French social pact, the trade union organizations are capable of coming together. That goes for retirement and for the future,” he added.
“Increasing the number of different forms of action has been the key to the movement’s strength,” said Bernadette Groison, the leader of the FSU, the main teachers union.
Force Ouvrière did not attend the joint trade union coordinating committee meeting, which was held at the national headquarters of the CGT, in Montreuil, five miles east of Paris.
The French parliament has just adopted the law on retirement reform. It is presently being examined by the Constitutional Council, which may rule on the constitutionality of the reform in the very near future.