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17 mars 2019 | 12h17 UTC

France: Calls for nationwide general strike March 19

France Alerte de sécurité

Labor unions call for a nationwide general strike on March 19; significant transportation disruptions expected

TIMEFRAME expected from 17/3/2019, 12h00 until 20/3/2019, 11h59 (Europe/Paris). COUNTRY/REGION France, Paris


The General Confederation of Labor (CGT), Force Ouvrière (FO), and Solidaires labor unions as well as student organizations have called for public and private sector workers to hold a 24-hour nationwide general strike on Tuesday, March 19, to demand better wages, pensions, and public services, as well as lower taxes.

Employees from the SNCF (national rail operator) and other public transportation companies (e.g. bus, trams, metro) are likely to join the strike. In addition, the USAC-CGT union representing air traffic controllers has called on members to strike on Tuesday. Associated delays and cancelations are expected nationwide - affecting flights, commuter trains, and public transport services - if the strike goes ahead as planned, notably in the capital Paris. Health and education services are also likely to be disrupted. 

Moreover, unions are planning a rally in Paris from at 13:00 (local time) at Place Edmond Rostand. Protesters will then march to MEDEF union building via the Boulevard Saint Michel, Port Royal, Boulevard du Montparnasse, Boulevard des Invalides, and Place Vauban. A heightened security presence and associated disruptions are expected along the route. Additional protests are possible in other major urban areas throughout France. 


Related CGT protests were held nationwide, notably on December 14, 18 and February 5, to protest falling purchasing power and perceived inadequate pensions and social protections.


Individuals in France are advised to confirm rail timetables and reservations, budget additional time to reach their destinations, and avoid all protests as a precaution.


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