The CGT and FO trade unions promised a strike for an indefinite period last week. After being reassured by written commitments from employers and the government on the remuneration of their overtime, FO unions and the CGT announced on Friday, the lifting of the strike.
According to the French media, protest of the CGT and FO members were supposed to start on Sunday evening. The truckers, drivers at moving companies as well as employees of waste management companies, paramedics and companies carrying money will strike. According to FO estimates, the transport sector employs about 700,000 people in France.
The unions declare that they want to defend purchasing power. They claim that promises made on December 4 by the Prime Minister to suspend the tax increase, are a drop in the ocean of needs.
Tax increases are not the only reason for the protest
CGT and FO are also dissatisfied with the recent decision of the State Council, which repealed the provisions of the 2016 decree. The decree provided for an increase in overtime pay for truckers by 25 percent and 50 percent. By canceling the decree, the authorities reduced overtime rates to 10 percent. CGT believes that this decision „may have a negative impact on the purchasing power of truck drivers”.
In turn, the French Ministry of Transport explains that the decision invalidating the decree „will have no consequences and will not change anything in practice”. The resort emphasizes at the same time that CGT and FO are guided by inappropriate motives.
Friday morning, FO was the first to announce the lifting of its call for an indefinite strike from Sunday evening. The same decision was announced by the CGT later that day. Given the „commitments made by the employers’ organizations and the government to respect the increases of 25 percent and 50 percent overtime”, the CGT considers that these rates are now „secure”, explained Fabrice Michaud, general secretary of the CGT Transport.