Summer departures at the risk of strikes



After a year and a half of virtual social immobility and the efforts of employees, we can feel their desire to be heard again ”, points out a union official from SNCF. The first days of July are thus the subject of several strike notices in the railway company.

The CGT-Cheminots, the company’s first union in professional elections (34% of the vote), calls for a national strike on Thursday 1er July to demand a general increase in wages and hiring and “Real negotiations for a high level social status. “ However, the CGT remains alone in the maneuver, the three other representative unions – Unsa Ferroviaire (24%), Sud-Rail (17%), CFDT Cheminots (14%) – even qualifying this movement as “Catch-all strike”.

These three organizations, however, submitted a notice for July 3 and 4, the first weekend of the month. But only for Ouigo employees, the commercial offer of low-cost high-speed trains. This offer now represents nearly a quarter of the number of high-speed trains. For more than a year, these employees have experienced loss of remuneration linked to the decline in activity ”, explains Thomas Cavel, secretary general of the CFDT-Cheminots. According to our information, the bonuses linked to the activity of a “rolling” railway worker can represent between 10 and 20% or more of his remuneration.

The railway workers experienced very degraded working conditions, especially for accommodation when they had to spend nights away from home for work and often had as only horizon the wall above the bowl that they had to bring themselves “, Thomas Cavel further says that management can still avoid the work stoppage by negotiating. The three unions are asking for a “Exceptional gratification” to recognize the commitment of the railway workers during the crisis.

But beyond the specific demands of these movements, the same subject sustains concern: the opening up to competition of regional trains (read below). We know that railway workers on the lines whose tender would be lost by SNCF should be transferred to the new operator. Even in a subsidiary of SNCF even if the latter won the contract.

The 2018 railway reform law stipulated that these employees would carry a “social backpack” with in particular the maintenance of job security ensured by the status of railway workers or the benefit of the latter’s pension plan. For the rest, a collective agreement is being negotiated between the Union of Public and Rail Transport (UTP), the employers’ union in the sector, and the representative railway unions. It must constitute a common social base for all railway workers in all companies and there are still important points to discuss. For example, the insurance and health costs component, the organization of social dialogue or even the traffic facilities which allow railway workers and their beneficiaries to travel for free or at reduced rates by train… These are all concerns that can fuel the agitation. social.

For the moment, it is not possible to apprehend the extent of possible disturbances caused by these movements. Like those, moreover, which could affect the airports of Roissy and Orly on 1er to July 5. The CGT and the CFE-CGC want to once again mobilize the employees of the Aéroports de Paris (ADP) group to demand the withdrawal of a plan involving wage cuts.

Faced with the collapse of traffic due to the pandemic, the management signed at the end of 2020 with the three representative unions (Unsa, CGT and CFE-CGC) an agreement for a collective contractual rupture which provides for 1,150 departures in 2021 (out of 6 300 employees), including 700 not replaced. But the CGT and the CFE-CGC refuse the plan to adapt work contracts (Pact) which provides for the abolition of certain bonuses resulting, according to management, in wage cuts ranging from 4 to 8%. Much more according to the unions.

On June 18, nearly 700 employees, in all, marched on the access roads of Roissy and Orly, sometimes causing, according to a source close to the airports, a few tens of minutes of delay but no real consequences on traffic. On the other hand, ADP was probably rather relieved by the removal by the government, on June 9, of health measures which required strict controls for arrivals from the European Union. According to a good connoisseur of French airports, this should allow better fluidity on arrival ”.

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